Money is in the bank accounts of small and medium businesses – supporting them and thousands of jobs through the devastating impacts of coronavirus on the state’s economy.

Premier Daniel Andrews and Treasurer Tim Pallas announced on 28th March that payroll tax refunds have now hit the bank accounts of 2,700 small businesses, putting $52 million immediately back into the pockets of business owners.

More than 21,000 small businesses have been contacted about their refund, with all eligible businesses who have provided their bank details to get their money from the Victorian Government by the end of next week.

In more support for businesses impacted by the coronavirus, the first tranche of the Government’s $500 million Business Support Fund grants will flow from Monday 8th April, with $10,000 grants available for over 30,000 employers who don’t pay payroll tax.

The Government has smashed its target of $750 million in fast-tracked payments of outstanding supplier invoices, with more than $1.1 billion paid to businesses this week – putting more money into the economy to support jobs.

Cheques will be in the mail to 12,500 businesses either waiving or refunding their liquor license fees for this year and 64,000 small businesses will have their land tax deferred into the next financial year, helping them cut costs and survive through the impacts of coronavirus.

On Saturday 27th March, National Cabinet announced strict new quarantine measures to slow the spread of coronavirus and save lives. Most cases of coronavirus in Victoria right now are connected to returning overseas travellers.

Under the new measures, which come into force at 11:59pm on Saturday 28th March, all travellers returning from overseas to Victoria will be placed in enforced quarantine for a self-isolation period of 14 days.

The Government has already secured 5,000 hotel rooms to house newly-returned travellers – who will each receive care packages of food and other essentials – and will secure more rooms as needed to support the measures.

Victoria is in discussions with the Australian Defence Force about logistical support including transporting travelers from the airport to accommodation or distributing care packages.

With international travel and non-essential domestic travel banned and Victorians canceling their school holiday plans, our hotels and motels are struggling. But this allows us to support them, as well as enforcing the new quarantine measures.

The Government will continue to work closely with business and unions and will announce further support over the coming weeks and months, in consultation with the Commonwealth, as the impacts of the coronavirus evolve.