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New COVID grants for the hard hit tourism sector coming in October

New COVID grants for the hard hit tourism sector coming in October

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Posted September 17, 2021
Tourism & Events

The Federal and State governments have just announced new grants to support tourism operators in hard-hit areas due to border closures.

Details are scant at the moment with applications opening in October but what we do know so far is that the Tourism and Hospitality Sector Hardship Program will provide one-off grants of $15,000, $25,000 and $50,000 to eligible employing small, medium and large tourism and hospitality businesses. This is for businesses across Queensland that have experienced a reduction in turnover of at least 70 per cent for at least seven consecutive days between 1 July and 30 September 2021.

There will be $40 million available for businesses across the state.

The government have yet to announce how a business will verify their eligibility but we know there will be three levels of support depending on the number of staff in the business:

  • Employing sole traders to small businesses (with a payroll under $1.3 million)
  • Small to medium businesses (with a payroll of $1.3 million to $10 million inclusive), and
  • Medium to large businesses (payroll over $10 million).

Support will ramp up in line with payroll size from $15,000 for small businesses, to $25,000 for medium businesses, and to $50,000 for large businesses. Interestingly, while employing sole traders were mentioned in the levels supported, they were omitted from the statement of the amount of support to be offered. We hope this will be clarified and that these important businesses are indeed supported by this grant.

We also note that in the statement from the state government they specifically mention “hard hit regions such as Cairns, Whitsundays and the Gold Coast”. We hope the Sunshine Coast was omitted from this statement due to oversight and not ineligibility, but perhaps Fiona Simpson, Sandy Bolton or Dan Purdie can help clarify that.

We’ll keep an eye open for when applications are available and hope to see our concerns are for naught by then.

Photo by Luisa Denu on Unsplash

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