Small Businesses in Coolangatta now have access to face-to-face support and information, after the Palaszczuk Government launched a pop-up hub to help those operating along the border between Queensland and New South Wales.
Minister for Employment and Small Business Di Farmer said she knew small businesses in Coolangatta were doing it tough.
“We know that COVID-19 is having a huge impact on small businesses, and for those close to the border it’s especially difficult right now.
“I went to Coolangatta last week to speak with small businesses and listen to what they’re going through.
“A number of businesses weren’t aware of the support that’s available, so we’ve organised for Business Queensland to set up a pop-up Support Hub and proactively go and speak to small businesses in the area.
“Staff from Business Queensland have been there since Monday, and the Hub opened today.
“Their job is to make sure local businesses can get access to every single bit of government support for which they’re eligible.
“They’re going door to door to businesses too, to make sure people know the Hub is there.
“We will also have someone there from the Queensland Small Business Commissioner’s office, who will be able to help with leasing issues.
“The Hub is at Kirra Hill Community and Cultural Centre on Garrick Street, and I’d encourage businesses to get over there to have a chat.”
Minister for Communities and Housing Leeanne Enoch said a range of face-to-face support is available at the Hub to help small business owners navigate the current challenges including access to information, referrals, and available grants.
“As part of this service, counsellors from Lifeline are on hand to talk to those who need emotional support or financial counselling services.
“A representative from Centrelink is also at the hub to provide information and assist with applications for Australian Government grants and financial aid.”
Minister for Youth Affairs and Member for Gaven Meaghan Scanlon said a range of support was available, including grants of up to $30,000 and a nearly $50 million package for tourism and hospitality businesses.
“That’s on top of more than 400 $5,000 Business Basics grants recently announced for small businesses on the Gold Coast, as well as major infrastructure projects creating jobs like the M1 upgrade to the border,” Minister Scanlon said.
Minister Farmer said the Palaszczuk Government was still working hard to find a way to reduce the impact of the border closure.
“Coolangatta and Tweed Heads might be in different states, but they’re essentially the same community. Businesses have staff and shops – and even family – either side of the border.
“Talking to businesses, the fall in foot traffic and the staffing and business management issues stemming from the border are the number one issue right now.
“I’m hearing the message loud and clear about how hard the impacts of the border closure are. I want businesses to know we are working hard to find a solution.
“I really welcome this change and want us all to work together so we can help those small businesses on the border doing it tough, while still protecting the health of Queenslanders.”
The COVID Small Business Support Hub is operating under a COVID Safe Plan. Visitors to the hub are required to follow public health directions, including checking in on entry using the Check In Qld app.
The Hub will be open Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm, and on Saturday mornings.
Examples of business support available:
• COVID-19 Business Support Grants of up to $30,000
• Exposure sites can get a cleaning rebate of up to $10,000
• Nearly $50m package for tourism and hospitality businesses
• $1,000 grants for non-employing sole traders
• Recently gave out more than 400 $5,000 Business Basics grants to small businesses on the Gold Coast
• Tailored one on one support from Mentoring for Growth, Small Business Financial Counsellors, and the Queensland Small Business Commissioner
• Information at www.business.qld.gov.au or call the 24/7 Small Business Hotline on 1300 654 687