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22 July 2020

JobKeeper 2.0 a welcome relief for small businesses: Ombudsman

The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman Kate Carnell says small businesses are breathing a sigh of relief after the federal government extended JobKeeper by six months.

“Thousands of small business owners across Australia will be sleeping better, knowing JobKeeper will be maintained in its current form until the end of September,” Ms Carnell says.

“Small businesses will be comforted most by the Prime Minister’s remarks that the federal government will continue to support small businesses who need it for the duration of this crisis.

“JobKeeper 2.0 will support small businesses from the end of September through until 28 March 2021.

“From October to December the payment will reduce to a fortnightly rate of $1200 per full time employee and $750 for employees working 20 hours or less per week.

“From January until March that payment will reduce again to $1000 for full time workers and $650 for part timers.

“The payments are reducing at a reasonable rate, in line with predictions of economic recovery and trading conditions picking up.

“It’s generous support for small businesses, who can now plan ahead for at least the next six months.  

 “Small businesses, including sole traders, will need to prove their eligibility again in October and January by showing their turnover has fallen by 30%.

“Crucially it will allow struggling small businesses to continue operating and paying their staff. It will also keep small businesses connected to their staff, who have been stood down, so they can re-engage their team when the time comes to ramp up.

“We know that many of the small businesses struggling now were viable and strong just a few months ago and many have the capacity to recover from this.

“The government is providing the safety net these small businesses need to help them get to the other side of this crisis.”