In addition to a moratorium on fees and charges for footpath and outdoor dining, food safety permits, commercial river moorings, advertising, temporary food stalls, commercial lease rents, and commercial stalls, booths, and stands, lease fees for community organisations will also not be collected.
Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner said Council is working hard to help businesses through the challenges of coronavirus.
“Small and large businesses are the backbone of our economy but also one of our biggest employers; and they are staring down financial uncertainty, the likes of which they have never seen before,” he said.
“We will do everything we can to support our businesses through this extraordinary time and business charges, rent, fees or permits required to be paid will be waived until at least 30 June 2020. Businesses that have paid these fees since 1 March will have them refunded.
“We will also refund all fees or charges for events cancelled due to COVID-19.
“We will reassess the policy once we know the true impacts on the Brisbane economy and workforce after 30 June. Also, anyone who has just paid any one of the fees since 1 March will be given special dispensation,” he said.
Council’s new Business in Brisbane Facebook group will help connect local business with the right tools and advice to support each other, and the introduction of seven-day payments for Council’s small business suppliers will ease financial strain, boost cash flow and support local jobs.
“This is about protecting jobs and community organisations, not just the livelihood of business owners.”
“Businesses and staff are under enormous strain as the coronavirus impact erodes customer numbers across all sectors, but particularly the hospitality industry.”
In mid-2019, Council also introduced a new Local Buy procurement policy which aims to lift the number of Council contracts going to local businesses to 80 percent.