While some industries and sectors have boomed following the end of Victoria’s extended second lockdown, many are still struggling, and the state’s new budget – announced by Treasurer Tim Pallas in late November – contains a range of stimulus measures designed to help.
$1.5 billion in tax relief
The budget sets out $1.5 billion in new tax relief for both businesses and families, including a new jobs tax credit. This is designed to support SMEs to rehire staff, restore hours or create new jobs.
It will provide businesses with a tax credit of 10¢ for every dollar they spend to increase the taxable wages they pay. This will be available for two years, with the Victorian Government estimating it could save businesses $836 million and helping to support an estimated 9,400 people back into employment.
The state government has also announced that it will increase the threshold for annual payroll tax payment starting from next financial year. This means up to 7,000 more businesses will be able to pay their payroll tax annually, rather than monthly. This is designed to cut red tape and assist with business cash flow.
Big spending to bring back Victorian jobs
Through the multi-faceted Jobs Plan, the government has pledged a range of funding including:
- $1 billion for TAFE and training including providing up to 80,000 new training places over the next four years. As well as helping upskill people looking for jobs, this will create jobs for teachers and mentors.
- $2 billion for the Breakthrough Victoria Fund, designed to drive investment in research and innovation over the next 10 years.
- $266.5 million for face-to-face intensive jobseeker support, which will in turn create jobs for mentors, advocates and counsellors.
- $64 million for a Digital Skills and Jobs program, giving people the skills and training needed to move into working in the digital sector.
- $465 million for the Victorian Tourism Recovery Package, designed to bolster a sector hit hard by the pandemic.
Support to help SMEs recover
With many businesses needing to close temporarily and put plans for hold this year, the Andrews government also pledged:
- $6 million for a Small Business Support Toolkit which will workshops, mentoring and coaching services to help SMEs innovate, adapt and navigate regulatory requirements.
- $5 million for the Ready for Growth Initiative, which will provide masterclasses and personalised coaching in digital engagement to at least 1000 businesses.
- 1 million for the Victorian Small Business Commission to establish a new case management system and streamline dispute resolution.
For more information about the budget the state government has titled Putting People First, visit the Victorian Budget 2020-21 website.
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