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What you need to know about the COVID Business Support Grant - Part 1 - Employing Businesses

Updated: Sep 2

The Solution In team has summarised the ACT Governments recently announced COVID-19 Business Support Grant so that you can see what you need to know about the program. If you need assistance with your application, you can book an appointment with Solution In by calling us on 0405 012 345 or book an appointment by clicking the button below. Solution In can talk you through the submission process and provide additional advice regarding the scheme. * *Please Note: That consultation fees apply

The ACT Government has recently opened applications for the COVID-19 Business Support Grant Program. The purpose of this program is to provide short term support for both small and medium businesses primarily operating within the ACT whose turnover has significantly declined as a result of the public health restrictions. A copy of the complete programs guidelines is attached at the end of this article.


This article refers to Employing Businesses, if you want to learn more information regarding non-employing businesses please follow the button below to view our other blog post.


Employing Businesses


Funding Considerations

Eligible businesses that had turnover decline by 30% or more as a result of the COVID-19 restrictions could receive support up to $20,000 over the three-week lockdown period (this timeframe may be extended).

Applications can be submitted by businesses at anytime and this application will only need to be made once.


Eligibility Requirements


Who is eligible to apply?

To be eligible for this grant, businesses must meet the following criteria:

  1. have a valid and active ABN as recorded on the Australian Business Register and be registered for GST on or before April 2021;

  2. be able to demonstrate primary operation in the ACT as at 1 April 2021; (One application may be submitted per ABN. )

  3. employ* people in the ACT as at 1 April 2021;

  4. have an Annual Turnover of more than $75,000 (excluding GST) in either 2019-20 or 2020-21;

  5. have total annual Australian wages of less than $10 million in 2019-20 or 2020-21; and

  6. Have experienced at least a 30 per cent reduction in revenue due to restricted trading conditions, to be assessed by comparing a consecutive seven-day period in the declared lockdown (between Friday 13 August and Thursday 2 September), with a consecutive 7-day period in April 2021 to August 2021 for which comparable business activity would have occurred.

*To be considered an employee, staff must be under the control of the business, receive regular PAYG salary or wages, and have Pay As You Go Withholding amounts as well as superannuation paid by the employer. Individuals who may have been considered “Eligible Business Participants” in the JobKeeper program https://www.ato.gov.au/General/JobKeeper-Payment/Partnerships,-trusts-and-companies/ are not considered employees for the purpose of this program.


Specifically, an owner, partner, director or shareholder in a company is not considered to be an employee for the purpose of this grant. A beneficiary of a trust is also not considered to be an employee for the purpose of this grant.


Who is not eligible to apply?

The following are not eligible to apply:

A. government Business Entities (either Australian or foreign);

B. association or industry groups (membership or non-membership);

C. businesses with an annual payroll of greater than $10,000,000; and

D. business with annual turnover of less than $75,000;

E. non-employing businesses;

F. entities that primarily earn passive income (rents, interest, or dividends);

G. companies in liquidation or provisional liquidation, administration or under any scheme of arrangement with its creditors;

H. any business that has received a comparable payment from another State or Territory Government.

I. a business is, or notice has been given that it will be, placed under external administration;

J. a company or business that is subject to a petition for bankruptcy or to wind up or deregister that company or business; and

K. a business that is or becomes deregistered or unregistered (including cancellation or lapse in registration or any relevant permit).


APPLICATION PROCESS

Business eligibility

Applications including all support material, must be made through Smarty Grants:

  1. Business must attest that they meet the eligibility criteria at the time of application and are continuing to trade per Section 3, Eligibility Requirements.

  2. Businesses must retain evidence for at least two years for future checks.

Applicants must provide:

  1. The ABN for the business, used to confirm business registration.

  2. For businesses not registered in the ACT, proof that the business’ primary operation is in the ACT.

  3. A Business Activity Statement (BAS), Australian income tax return, Notice of Assessment or other documentation demonstrating:

a. annual (or annualised) turnover of more than $75,000 (excluding GST) in either the 2019-20 or 2020-21 financial year and total Australian payroll; and

b. total Australian payroll of less than $10 million in 2019 or 2020-21.

4. Evidence to demonstrate a 30 per cent or more reduction in turnover revenue in a consecutive seven-day period in the declared lockdown (between Friday 13 August and Thursday 2 September), compared to a prior consecutive 7-day period in April 2021 to August 2021, due to restricted trading conditions.

5. Evidence for the purpose of section 4.2(4) may include, but is not limited to:

a. Extracts from accounting software of turnover comparison data for the comparable week to the assessment period;

b. Emails or texts to or from clients or suppliers detailing cancelled or postponed orders or appointments;

c. Receipts for refunds provided;

d. Invoices or delivery dockets;

e. Appointment/scheduling platform, demonstrating cancelled appointments or bookings; and / or

f. Screenshots of cancelled events.

6. Information required to register for payment through ACT Government finance systems, including bank account details and GST paying status.

a. Applicants will be required to upload a bank statement to evidence their bank account details and link to the business’ ABN.

7. Provide details of the Applicant’s qualified accountant, registered tax agent or registered BAS agent, if applicable;

8. Lodge other supporting documents as required to demonstrate the Applicant meets the eligibility criteria;

9. Declaration that the business meets the eligibility criteria; and

10. Details of a current proof of identity document for the Applicant. This must be one of the following:

a. a driver license issued in any Australian jurisdiction; or

b. an Australian Passport; or