COVID-19 information for businesses

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This page was last updated 29 July 2020. 

COVID-19 support hotline

The City’s business support team has collected and collated a plethora of information relating to the support being made available by local, state and federal governments in response to COVID-19. Businesses can call our free COVID-19 Business Support hotline to seek advice or information relating to these support packages and other key resources and support agencies. Call (08) 9432 9950 or email business@fremantle.wa.gov.au to access advice via the hotline.

State and federal government COVID-19 support

State and Federal Governments are providing access to a range of support being made available for businesses.

To find out more about the support being made available for businesses by the WA State Government click here

To find out more about the support being made available for businesses  by the Australian Government click here

To find out more about the support being made available for businesses by the Australian Tax Office click here

For updates and information from the WA Department of Health regarding COVID-19 click here

To find out more about funding and grants being made available to businesses as a result of COVID-19 you can visit the City of Fremantle’s Funding Finder by clicking here

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City of Fremantle COVID-19 support

In recognition of COVID-19 creating an unprecedented situation and the impact this is having on businesses and tenants the City is offering a safety net in the event that a business is ineligible for other similar support provided via a State or Federal Government stimulus package

  • Rates - The City will allow businesses to make payment of rates through weekly or fortnightly payments.

  • Fees – Statutory fees may be deferred for a period of 180 days (6 months) from the date the business has been required to implement a full or partial temporary closure, or can demonstrate alignment with the criteria. Payment of fees that are postponed will accrue in arrears and can be repaid in line with an agreed payment plan with the City. If the business has been required to implement full or partial temporary closure for a period of longer than six months, payment of fees can be postponed until 90 days after the business recommences normal operations. No interest will be applied to these outstanding arrears.

  • Payment Plans – In the event that extreme financial duress directly resulting from COVID-19 prevents businesses from repaying accrued arrears in line with the support above, the City may consider further individual arrangements on a case by case basis. The City reserves the right to request information that demonstrates extreme financial duress before granting a payment plan beyond the current lease term.

In addition to the support* being offered to businesses, the City will be offering the following support to City of Fremantle tenants*:

  • Rent – The City will allow tenants to postpone rental payments for a period of 180 days (6 months) from the date that the tenant has been required to implement a full or partial temporary closure, or can demonstrate alignment with other criteria. Rental payments that are postponed will accrue in arrears and can be repaid through the remaining term of their current lease. If the tenant has been required to implement a full or partial temporary closure for a period of longer than six months, rental payments can be postponed until 90 days after the tenant recommences full operations. No interest will be applied to the outstanding arrears.

  • Outgoings – In the event that a tenant has been required to implement a full or partial temporary closure, or can demonstrate alignment with other criteria, it is likely that costs associated with variable outgoings will reduce accordingly. The City will adjust charges relating to outgoings commensurate with the reduction in operations by the tenant.

  • Payment Plans – In the event that extreme financial duress directly resulting from COVID-19 prevents tenants from repaying accrued arrears prior to the end of their current lease term, the City may consider further individual arrangements on a case by case basis. The City reserves the right to request information that demonstrates extreme financial duress before granting a payment plan beyond the current lease term.

  • The implementation of a full or partial temporary closure, or any of the above support being accessed will not result in a breach of the terms and conditions under the tenants lease.

The City will also be undertaking the following initiatives to assist businesses:

  • Exemptions from planning approvals for many changes of land use and fast tracking other approvals for business.

  • Fast-tracking of payment for creditors.

  • Continuing to invest in major capital works program in Fremantle including the Kings Square renewal project.

  • Promotion of businesses via the City’s Visit Fremantle social media platforms and website.

*Please note eligibility criteria may apply for support being offered.

For further information on eligibility or how to access the above mentioned support please contact us via email at business@fremantle.wa.gov.au or call 9432 9950.

Additional resources and support for businesses

Small Business Development Corporation

The Small Business Development Corporation offers a range of support and advice for small businesses experiencing difficulty as a result of COVID-19 including

  • Free webinars
  • Support and advisory services
  • Employer obligations
  • Information on Government support packages

To find out more about the resources being made available for businesses by the Small Business Development Corporation click here

Chamber of Commerce and Industry WA

The Chamber of Commerce and Industry WA is providing a range of resources that may assist businesses experiencing difficulty as a result of COVID-19 including information about:

  • Planning
  • Business continuity
  • Workforce options
  • Standing down staff
  • Managing apprentices and trainees

To find out more about the resources being made available for businesses by the Chamber of Commerce and Industry WA click here

Business Foundations

Business Foundations is a Fremantle based business advisory service that offers a range of free support options for businesses experiencing difficulty as a result of COVID-19. Business Foundations will be offering a number of free webinars beginning 1 April 2020. For more information on support available from Business Foundations click here

Australian Banking Association (ABA)

The Australian Banking Association promotes and encourages policies that improve banking services for all Australians and their membership is comprised of 22 banks from across Australia, including the four major banks. The ABA has put together helpful FAQ's: what you need to know about COVID-19 bank relief here

COVID-19 App and WhatsApp Group

The Australian Government has developed an app for mobile devices that provides a wealth of information regarding COVID-19. The Australian Government app can be downloaded by clicking here.

The Australian Government has also created a WhatsApp group that provides live COVID-19 updates and information. To access this information via WhatsApp click here.

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