Last updated: 5 February 2021
The Western Australian Government continues to announce measures to support small business during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
The small business relief package includes:
- A $43 million package for small businesses and charities impacted by the 31 January 2021 five day lockdown, including an electricity bill offset.
- $17,500 grants for small businesses with a payroll between $1 million and $4 million.
- The $1 million payroll tax threshold (announced in October 2019) will be brought forward by six months to 1 July 2020.
- The WA Government will waive rental payments for small businesses and not-for-profit groups in State Government-owned buildings for six months.
As well as the following measures:
- From 2 June 2020, businesses that are eligible for JobKeeper Payment and have more than three major water fixtures (for example toilet, urinal or pan washer) can apply to Water Corporation to have their wastewater service charges waived for the fourth to 200th fixture, for the period 1 May - 31 August 2020. Applications close 30 September 2020.
- One-off $2,500 credit on electricity bills will be applied to small businesses that consume less than 50MWh per annum. For more information read the statements on the Synergy and Horizon Power websites.
- Power and water disconnections will not occur and interest will not be charged on deferred payments until 30 September 2020 for small businesses facing financial difficulty due to COVID-19. Please note: This applies to Synergy and Horizon Power customers.
- Payroll tax will be waived for four months for businesses with annual wages under $7.5 million (NB: this replaces the previous payroll deferral measure which was announced).
- Affected businesses can apply for interest free payment arrangements and for late payment penalties to be waved for a range of taxes and duties, including payroll tax, transfer duty, landholder duty or land tax.
- A range of business licence fees have been waived, including liquor licence renewal fees for 2020, which will be waived and refunds given to businesses that have already paid.
Relief package for on-demand transport industry (announced 1 April 2020)
The WA Government has announced a $9 million relief package to support the taxi and on-demand transport industry during the coronavirus pandemic. This includes:
- $4.7 million regional taxi industry assistance package, with payments expected to be made in July
- $2,500 cash payments to on-demand booking services
- waiving booking services and passenger transport vehicle authorisation fees for one year
- postponing the deadline for taxis to install camera surveillance units by one year
Land Tax Assistance for Landlords (announced 23 April 2020)
The WA Government has launched a $100 million Land Tax Assistance for Landlords program, offering grants to commercial landlords. To be eligible, they must provide rent relief for a minimum of three months and freeze outgoings to small businesses that have suffered at least a 30 per cent reduction in turnover due to COVID-19. Grants equivalent to 25 per cent of the landlord’s land tax bill for 2019-20 for the property in which an eligible tenant is provided relief will be paid to landlords. Applications are now open.
Construction fund (announced 19 May 2020)
On 19 May 2020 it was announced that a $150 million housing investment package would be brought forward to help maintain a pipeline of work for the construction centre. The package includes the immediate refurbishment of 70 social housing homes.
From 1 June 2020 (with payments backdated to 1 April) a $24.5 million support package will be available to assist the building and construction industry retain apprentices and trainees during the COVID-19 crisis.
Travel agents’ support package (announced 18 September 2020)
The State Government has announced a $3 million support fund to assist Western Australian travel agents. Online applications for the program opened on 2 October 2020 and closed at 5pm on 30 October 2020.
Payroll grant payments (updated 23 September 2020)
Grants of $17,500 will automatically be paid by cheque to eligible businesses from July, however you should log in to Revenue Online to ensure your postal address is up to date. There may be delays for those whose tax status changed in 2018-19 or liability for payroll tax changed in 2018-19 or 2019-20.
On 23 September, it was confirmed that WA businesses would continue to be exempt from payroll tax on payments provided under the extended Commonwealth Government’s JobKeeper wage subsidy scheme, until March 28, 2021.
International Education COVID-19 Industry Support Fund (announced 27 November 2020)
Payments of up to $50,000 will be made to eligible international education providers to help them sustain their businesses until international students can safely return to WA. Applications for the fund closed at 5pm on 7 December 2020.
Electricity offset (announced 5 February 2021)
The State Government announced a $43 million package to support small businesses in the Perth, Peel and South West regions impacted by the five day lockdown between 31 January and 5 February 2021. This includes a $500 electricity offset for eligible Synergy and Horizon Power customers. A process will be put in place soon for eligible small business owners whose electricity bills are paid by lessors to apply for the $500 offset.
In addition to the support offered by the State Government, the Federal Government has also announced a range of financial support measures to support business.
Visit smallbusiness.wa.gov.au/coronavirus for more information on how to manage disruption to your business as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.