One third of NSW small businesses ineligible for Covid help

NSW Treasurer Dominic Perrottet. Picture: Christian Gilles
NSW Treasurer Dominic Perrottet. Picture: Christian Gilles

More than a third of small businesses in the Sydney CBD are not eligible for the Covid-19 lockdown support scheme, leaving those earning less than $75,000 a year “out in the cold”.

Treasurer Dominic Perrottet on Tuesday announced a package of $5000 to $10,000 grants to small businesses that have been crippled by the latest lockdown for Greater Sydney.

But not everyone will reap the benefits of the scheme.

Businesses or sole traders who have turnover less than $75,000 or have existed for less than 12 months must rely on the federal government’s Pandemic Leave Disaster Payment which offers a maximum $500 for the entire lockdown period.

“Not only do I feel frustrated that our jobs don’t seem worthy, but I am just feeling blocked by our government with nowhere to go,” makeup artist Natalia Ladyko said.

“We always seem to be in the grey area of the government, left wondering when the money will come our way.”

Meanwhile, Karla Jacob, owner of the Storybook Party Co events business, said she would struggle to keep her business afloat until restrictions eased.

“I’ve lost 100 per cent of my revenue for the next two weeks – huge corporate contracts, kids’ parties, all cancelled and fully refunded,” she said.

“I’ve been given absolutely no support and don’t know how the government expects me to keep paying the rent for my venue.”

Of the 74,000 businesses registered in the Sydney CBD, 20,000 turnover less than $50,000 and are therefore ineligible for the grant.

Businesses which have been established in the past 12 months will also be unable to receive the support.

The NSW economy is expected to take a $2bn hit from the latest Covid-19 lockdown.