Deputy Premier John Barilaro

Small businesses in southern NSW will benefit from a new $45 million grant program designed to cushion the economic impacts of the southern border closure.

Businesses in 13 Local Government Areas along the NSW and Victorian border will be able to apply for $5000 and $10,000 grants through Service NSW from Tuesday, September 8, thanks to the work of the NSW Nationals in the state government.

People in border communities like Albury-Wodonga, Yarrawonga-Mulwala and Echuca-Moama usually move between towns, and the closures have had a significant impact on day-to-day business. The NSW Nationals in the state government are investing in targeted relief for these regional communities to help ease the pressures and costs of keeping businesses open while borders remain closed.

Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional NSW John Barilaro said the $45 million grant program included two tiers of targeted support.

“While we are in these unprecedented times, we are committed to keeping local jobs in local communities,” Mr Barilaro said.

“The first tier of $5000 is for employing and non-employing small businesses, such as non-employing sole traders, that have suffered at least a 30 per cent decline in turnover as a result of the border closure.

“The second tier of $10,000 is for employing small businesses that have suffered at least a 75 per cent decline as a result of the closure.”

The grants will help keep people in jobs and businesses in business while Victoria battles its second wave of COVID-19.

Small businesses are the lifeblood of local communities, with many grocery stores and mechanics being independently owned. The grants can be used to pay for unavoidable expenses such as utilities, as well as to develop marketing and communication materials or to diversify their offerings to help businesses adapt to the new environment.

The grants will be available from Tuesday, September 8, for six weeks until Sunday, October 18, and small business owners can apply via the Service NSW website.

The NSW Nationals in the state government have worked hard over the past four months to roll out the Small Business Support Grant and the Small Business Recovery Grant to regional businesses, with more than $593 million worth of grants paid out statewide across the two programs.

Eligible areas

  • Albury
  • Balranald
  • Berrigan
  • Bega Valley
  • Edward River
  • Federation
  • Greater Hume Shire
  • Hay
  • Murray River
  • Murrumbidgee
  • Snowy Monaro
  • Snowy Valleys
  • Wentworth

The Southern Border Small Business Support Grant can only be used for eligible expenses incurred following the introduction of the NSW and Victoria border permit scheme on July 8, 2020. The grant must only be used for expenses for which no other government support is available. For example, this grant cannot be used to pay wages for staff eligible for JobKeeper.