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FREE OF CHARGE ASSISTANCE – IT’S OUR WAY OF HELPING YOU SECURE THE COVID 19 BUSINESS SUPPORT GRANTS AND FUNDING YOU ARE ENTITLED TO!!!

The unexpected break out of a second COVID 19 wave WILL have pushed many small business owners to the edge.  Hopefully, most will survive but without doubt some will close their doors for good. To help small business clients affected by the latest lockdown the Journey2 Team have decided to do their bit and give back to their clients. And this is how: As a small business client the Journey2 Team will, FREE OF CHARGE, assist you to apply for the State or Federal Government grants & funding by: If you are uncertain, clarify whether or not your business meets the criteria, Calculate the percentage % decrease for nominated period and determine which tier you meet for funding, If you don’t meet the standard criteria for decrease in sales we will determine your eligibility under the “Alternate Circumstances” tests, Provide you with supporting work paper for the above, Provide you with the mandatory “Accountant’s Letter” All you need to do is log on and complete the application!!! The Journey2 Team will be setting aside the following 4 Wednesdays ONLY for the above, so the FREE SERVICE will be on a “first in, first done” basis. Book your spot by call 02-42284877 or emailing Renae.Meldrum@journey2.com.au  our Client Service Co-Ordinator.

HOW TO REGISTER TO SHARE IN $5.3 BILLION COVID-19 BUSINESS GRANTS AND PAYMENTS

This morning you should have received an email from the NSW Government with the subject matter “New restrictions for Greater Sydney businesses” (see below). What the subject matter does not tell you is that at the VERY BOTTOM is the LINK to register your interest in the various Grants & Payments. To Get ready for your fair share help avoid delays in completing your application …. ensure your business and contact details are up-to-date with the Australian Business Register (ABR) ensure your personal, contact and business details are up-to-date in your MyServiceNSW Account and your business profile if you don’t have one, create a MyServiceNSW Account and business profile. When you click this link scroll down until you come to the following and complete the application for each of your business if you have more than one. If you need help to do this just call our office. 02 4228 4877 Register to be notified when COVID-19 payments open for applications $5.3 billion in COVID-19 business grants and payments open for applications over the next two weeks to help businesses with cash flow, maintain staffing levels and expenses.   1. COVID-19 Business Grant A one-off payment to help businesses with cashflow support for the first 3 weeks of lockdown. Grant varies from $7,500 up to $15,000 depending on the decline in turnover.   To be eligible your business must demonstrate a revenue decline of 30% or more, aggregated annual turnover between $75,000 and $50 million, and payroll up to $10 million. 2. JobSaver Fortnightly payments to help maintain employee headcount (as at 13 July) and provide cashflow support to businesses   Employing businesses: 40% of weekly payroll, with a minimum payment of $1,500 per week and a maximum payment of $10,000 per week Non-employing business: $1,000 per week   To be eligible your business must demonstrate a revenue decline of 30% or more, and annual turnover between $75,000 and $50 million. 3. Micro Business Grant  A fortnightly payment of $1,500 for businesses with a turnover between $30,000 and $75,000   To be eligible your business needs annual turnover of $30,000 to $75,000, revenue decline of 30% or more and the businesses must provide the primary income for a person associated with the business. Businesses can expect to start receiving funds by the end of July. Register your interest for any of these and we’ll email you when applications open.

COVID 19 Lockdown support for Businesses

State & Federal Government COVID 19 Support The NSW State & Federal Governments have released information about support available to businesses if a lockdown extends for 4 weeks or more.  The support packages available are: Grants of up to $15,000 available through the expanded 2021 COVID-19 business grants program Cashflow support of up to $10,000 per week $1,500 Micro Business Grants Deferral of Payroll Tax & a 25% payroll tax waiver Eviction Moratorium, Rent Protection & Grants If you would like to apply or register your interest for any of the above grants it is important to ensure that your Business & contact details are correct on the Australian Business Register & your personal & business information is correct and you have a MyServiceNSW account with a business profile 2021 COVID-19 Business Grant – Up to $15,000 The small business grant has been increased up to $15,000 and expanded to eligible business with annual wages of up to $10,000,000.  This grant is also available to sole traders & not for profit organisations. The impact the lockdown has on your turnover determines the amount of the grant available to you.  You will need to provide supporting evidence that shows the decline in turnover over a minimum 2 week period after the lockdown commenced. Eligibility The eligibility criteria and the application of the decline in turnover test has not yet been determined.  We will keep you updated as more information is released. How to Apply Applications open on the 19th of July through ServiceNSW Up to $10,000 cashflow Support Cashflow support of between $1,500 & $10,000 is available to businesses.  The amount of cashflow support you receive is based upon 40% of the NSW payroll payments made by your business.  this include not-for-profit organisations. If you do not have employees or are a sole trader and you meet the eligibility criteria you will access to cashflow support of $1,000 per week. The cashflow support will end when the Commonwealth hotspot declaration is removed or when lockdown restrictions are eased back. Eligibility Demonstrate a 30% decline in turnover Keep you current staffing levels as of the 13th of July 2021.  This includes full time, part time & long term casuals. Annual turnover between $75,000 & $50 million Impacted by the Greater Sydney COVID-19 restrictions The eligibility criteria and the application of the decline in turnover test has not yet been determined. How to apply Applications are not yet open for the Cashflow support payment.  You can register your interest from 14th July 2021 through ServiceNSW Micro Business Grants – $1,500 per fortnight $1,500 per fortnight is available to micro businesses impacted by the current Greater Sydney COVID-19 restrictions.  This grant is also available to sole traders.  The grants are available from week one of the lockdown until restrictions are eased. Eligibility Demonstrate a 30% decline in turnover Annual turnover of mare than $30,000 and less than $75,000 Impacted by the current COVID-19 restrictions in Greater Sydney How to apply Applications are not yet open for the Micro Business Grant.  You can register your interest from 14th July 2021 through ServiceNSW Payroll Tax Relief Payroll Tax & lodgement deadline deferred The July & August 2021 NSW payroll tax due date has been deferred to 7th of October 2021.  The due date for the annual reconciliation for 2020 – 2021 has also been deferred until 7th of October 2021. Payment arrangements & previous payroll tax deferrals due in July 2021 have NOT been deferred. 25% payroll tax waiver for businesses with Australian wages between $1.2million & $10million If you have experienced a 30% decline in turnover and have paid wages between $1.2million & $10million you may be entitled to the 25% payroll tax waiver for 2021-2022.  More information is to be released by the end of August from RevenueNSW Eviction Moratorium Legislative amendments are being introduced for residential tenants who fall in to rental arrears and have suffered a loss of income of 25% due to the current COVID-19 lockdown in Greater Sydney and meet certain other requirements. Commercial & retail landlords are encouraged to attempt mediation before evicting a tenant impacted by the Public Health Orders. Land Tax Relief Commercial, retail & residential landlords will be entitled to land tax relief if you provided a rent reduction to tenants in financial crisis.  The value of the relief is equal to the amount of rent reductions you provided to your tenant.

UPDATE: COVID 19 DISASTER PAYMENT

Many thanks to my daughter, Natassia Soper of A Current Affair Chanel 9, for putting this concise summary together. Applications for government assistance we have heard will be available on line from tomorrow. What I have heard is that the base test period will be a two week period in the 2019 financial year. Federal Government Response PRIME MINISTER SCOTT MORRISON – STATEMENT Individuals By week 4 of lock down disaster payments will be increased $600 for those who have lost more than 20 hours paid fortnightly $375 for those who have lost 8 – 20 hours of week paid fortnightly Full-time, part-time and casual workers eligible – it will be liquid asset means tested Residents in 4 LGA’s that were locked down first are eligible THIS Friday. All NSW residents eligible These are the same payments that were in place when Victoria was in lockdown in the last December quarter For individuals, the federal government will offer “administrative relief” to NSW taxpayers in trouble, including reduced payment plans for money owed to the government and no interest charged on late payments. Business support Half a billion dollar Cash Boost program package…. Cost share 50/50 state and federal funding Expressions of interest open tomorrow $1000 for sole traders Payments between $1500 and $10000 per week, paid fortnightly with to businesses of up to $50Million.  Business only eligible for max of $10,000 or 40% of payroll amount on the proviso they maintain their current staffing levels Additional Mental Health Support   $ 12.25 million dollars by commonwealth for mental health support services. $ 1.5million for a number of services, lifeline, kid help line, beyond blue and more State Government Response – $4.1 Billion dollar package NSW Treasurer Anthony Perrott “We have your back. We are going to get through this difficult time and get out the other side” $15k grants available for small businesses with payrolls of up to 10 million – Applications open 19th July Defer payroll tax liabilities over next 3 months Will Waive payroll tax for businesses who have a reduced turnover of 30% and have payrolls under $10 million $15k per fortnight for businesses with a turnover of between $30k and $75 who experience a reduction of turnover by 30% during this time. Mandating no lock outs or evictions for commercial and residential tenants during this period of time Rebates or discount in land tax for landlords who provide rent reduction to tenants Encouraging retails to work with landlords Protections for residential tenancy  – no evictions for people doing it tough and had a reduction in come of 25 % 4000 temporary placements for people who are homeless For more information or to start your application CLICK HERE      

COVID-19 DISASTER PAYMENT – ARE YOU ELIGIBLE?

The COVID-19 Disaster payment is a lump sum payment to help workers unable to earn an income due to the COVID-19 lockdown, hotspot or period of restricted movement. You may be eligible if ALL of the following apply: You cannot attend work and lost income on or after day 8 of a COVID-19 restriction of movement You do not have access to appropriate paid leave entitlements through your employer You are not receiving an income support payment eg carer payment, age pension, austudy, jobseeker, parenting payment, disability support pension, special benefits You are not receiving a Pandemic Leave Disaster Payment or state small business payment for the same period The COVID-19 Disaster Payment is a one off payment to help when the restrictions last for more than seven days. You need to meet the eligibility rules to receive the payment. You are an Australian resident or hold an eligible working visa You are aged 17 year or older You do not receive an income support payment such as those listed above You live or work in a Commonwealth-declared COVID-19 hotspot The NSW COVID-19 recognised events: Parts of Sydney from June 2021 Greater Sydney from June 2021 To check if you are in a current hotspot click the link below https://www.health.gov.au/resources/publications/listing-areas-of-covid-19-local-transmission-as-hotspots HOW MUCH DO YOU GET? If you lost less that 20 hours work you will get $325 for each recognised event if you are eligible. If you lost more than 20 hours work you will get $500 for each recognised event if you are eligible. It can be paid from the date of activation for an area where the following apply: The area has a public health lockdown or period of restricted movement for more than seven days The area is declared a COVID-19 hotspot If you are a member of a couple you can both claim the payment.  You and your partner will need to make separate claims.  Claims can be made through your myGov account. HOW TO CLAIM Australian residents need to claim online. To claim online you need a myGov account linked to a Centrelink online account. If you don’t have a myGov account, you can create one. CLICK HERE to view video on how to claim on line HOW TO HELP YOUR EMPLOYEES For further information please CLICK HERE and HERE  

ATO Plans to Step Up Debt Collection – Are you in their sights?

If you have a TAX, PAYGWT, GST, FBT, SGL or other debt owing to the ATO, then this information is VERY relevant to you. The following information was just received this from a “Big End of Town” tax consultant in Sydney regarding ATO debt recovery. “….. attended the Association of Independent Insolvency Practitioners webinar where the ATO gave an update on what they will be doing going forward. The main thing I got out of it was: Collection activity (e.g. wind up and bankruptcy notices) will resume from 30 September 2021 ATO will not consider debt settlement on principal tax debts (i.e. will only negotiate on GIC and penalties), taxpayers can only seek a compromise through a Voluntary Administration or a formal Small Business Restructure ATO will continue to issue Directors Penalties Notice where they see non-compliance, especially outstanding super Their collections team is now back full time, but will continue their soft approach in assisting businesses until 30 September ATO is more willing to support a Deed of Company Arrangement (DOCA) proposals if tax debts were newer (say debts incurred in 2020 compare to a debt incurred in 2018). My Commentary: What do you need to do? It is understandable that many business owners, since the first COVID19 lock down back in March 2020, have taken the tack of not paying some or all current tax and SGL debts on the basis that: Cash flow had dried up and funds were not available The future was uncertain so preserving cash reserves helped business survival The ATO took a very soft approach to debt collection so as not to compound the strain on cash flow debt The above factors provided a landscape for the culture of slow payment or not paying tax & SGL debts to develop. To avoid tax debt mounting to difficult unmanageable levels, it has always been our advice to clients to pay the taxes & SGL as and when they fall due or as a minimum, enter into a payment plan sooner rather than later. On the other hand I have heard of stories where … some business owners are racking up huge tax and SGL debts to prop up their struggling businesses. whilst some business owners who have traded profitably have taken advantage of the ATO’s soft debt collect approach and racked up huge debts so they can use the money for other purposes. Regardless of your reason, if you have an outstanding tax debts you have FIVE options: Do Nothing, and wait for the ATO to get around to chasing you for the money and deal with the consequences then. ( We strongly recommend against this), Contact the ATO NOW and organise a payment plan (perhaps in part with option 3 below) before 30 September 2021, Contact your financier and organise a loan to pay of the SGL and tax debt,(perhaps in part with option 2 above). My understanding is that many of the big 4 banks will not lend to pay down tax debt but my understanding is that some of the second tier banks do. One that comes to mind is BOQ. Assuming you have the funds, and based on the above, payout your oldest debts first. Ideally, to reduce the possibility of being held personally liable for tax debts,  the order in which debts should be paid out are: SGL and other super debts GST PAYGWT Income Tax If after investigating options 2, 3, and 4, you find yourself in a position that you are of the opinion that you cannot pay these tax debts as and when they fall due then you may be insolvent in which case you need to seek further advice from an accountant, commercial lawyer or other insolvency practioner.  

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