Support and information for businesses during COVID-19

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Are you a local business looking for:

  • what support is available,
  • information on the latest restrictions and
  • help to plan and respond to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic?

Victorian Government information on restrictions, support and requirements for businesses can be found at Business Victoria.

The Shire has dedicated staff providing support to prepare and update your COVID Safe plans as requirements change.
 
Other useful resources for businesses: 

Victorian Government QR Codes

Most patrons are great at checking in to a venue or event by scanning QR codes, but some still need a reminder. Please ensure you ask all guests if they have checked in properly. These records help contact tracers in the event a positive case of coronavirus is identified. As we recently experienced, the coronavirus threat is still real and we must continue to be vigilant so we can continue to stay safe and importantly, for business to stay open.

To help contract tracers, you should only use one platform per business, organisation, club or event. The Victorian Government has a free QR code service, which only asks patrons their first name and phone number, making the check in process quick and easy.

Victorian Government QR Code Service | Coronavirus Victoria

Business support

In 2021/22 (financial year) the Shire will invest over $10million in recovery projects, programs, and initiatives. These actions will contribute to the lasting resilience and renewal of the Peninsula. Learn more about our Towards COVID Recovery actions.

COVID business grants and funding

The easiest way to stay up to date with the latest COVID funding and grant opportunities is to use dedicated search tools. This will help connect you with the biggest range of opportunities, relevant to your business.

Funding Finder: The Shire has launched a free online service that enables individuals, businesses and community organisations to easily identify and access funding opportunities from local, state and federal governments as well as philanthropic grant programs. Visit and register on Funding Finder to stay up to date on the latest opportunities. Learn: How Funding Finder works for you - to help you source funding for your project.

Federal and State Governments offer a range of different funding opportunities for businesses and organisations of all different types.

Training and advice for your business

A wide range of free business resources  are collated on the Shire’s MPbusiness website.

  • Free Business Webinars on topics such as: finance fundamentals, taking businesses online, business marketing, building business resilience, and commercialising new business ideas.
  • Free Small Business Mentoring Clinics to support businesses on the Peninsula. These clinics are introductory sessions, where you get the opportunity for a 45 minute one-on-one with a small business mentor at no cost.
  • Library membership gives you access to a range of free training resources that can help your business and staff. This includes free access to Lynda.com which offers training in online meetings, productivity tools and more. Visit the Library website to learn more.

Free marketing for your business

The Mornington Peninsula Shire’s Support Local campaign showcases the many faces of our diverse local businesses and shares it with the wider community.

The campaign captures the real people behind our hard-working community, and urges everyone – community members, organisations, and businesses – to consider how we think, spend, and recommend local. We all play a role in supporting the local supply chain, building local networks, and being involved in the local community.

At the heart of the campaign is the Support Local Business Directory. With hundreds of local businesses under various business categories, this is the place to find a local business. It's free and easy to set up, and you can edit your listing whenever you like.

Simply create a login and get started!

 

 

Important Points for Food Businesses

Stage 4 Business restrictions are now in effect on the Mornington Peninsula, you can learn more about what this means for food and health businesses: DHHS Accommodation and food services stage 4 restrictions.

For Mornington Peninsula specific information visit: Coronavirus updates, news and information.

Services and industries that are able to remain operational are required to have a COVID Safe Plan.

Employers that require their staff to attend a work site must issue a worker permit to their employees.

 

Free online training for food safety and allergen management is available for food businesses at:

Environmental Health Officers are available to provide onsite advice to food businesses on the Mornington Peninsula. As businesses fully reopen, it is important staff are trained in food safety, hygiene and allergen management. If your business fully ceased trading during the previous Coronavirus dining restrictions, please contact the Shire’s Environmental Health Team to book an inspection before serving foods.

The Team can be contacted by phone (03) 5950 1050 or email CustomerService@mornpen.vic.gov.au

Learn more about Health and Hygiene for Business

 

Accessing mental health support

Business proprietors, their staff and families can access a range of mental health services to help them cope.

  • The Shire has a detailed list of resources to help with managing COVID-19 & Health and Wellbeing.
  • Business Victoria offers additional mental health business resources and a listing of free mental health services.
  • Beyond Blue has valuable tips for small business owners on managing mental health during coronavirus or you can call them on 1800 512 348 to speak to a trained counsellor.
  • Resources are available on the Head to Health website, including self-help options and information on accessing mental health services. 
  • For businesses concerned about staff between 15-25 years there is support on offer through Headspace Ph: 1800 650 890, and the Shire Youth Services team

Meeting occupational health and safety obligations

Businesses have an important role to assist with the prevention and management of the current outbreak of Coronavirus (COVID-19). The Shire is regularly updating information for food businesses to assist them and further protect the community.

Advice on operating a Covid-safe business, business restrictions, personal hygiene and food safety is available from DHHS and from Business Victoria.

You can also find specific sector guidance including cafes, restaurants, food businesses, and more.

Services and industries that are able to open are required to have a COVID Safe Plan.

All employers must notify Work Safe Victoria if an employee has tested positive for COVID-19.

Tenants and Landlords Relief Assistance

Commercial tenants struggling with rent payments will benefit from rent relief, with the Victorian Government having finalised new regulations and broadened eligibility for the Commercial Tenancy Relief Scheme (the Scheme).

The Scheme will help small and medium-sized businesses with an annual turnover of less than $50 million that have experienced a fall in turnover of more than 30 per cent during the pandemic. 

Under the Scheme, the Victorian Small Business Commission (VSBC) will support tenants and landlords by providing information to assist with negotiating a rent relief agreement and access to free and impartial mediation if a fair agreement can’t be reached. The VSBC is also offering help with negotiations and free mediation in situations where the tenant isn’t eligible for the Scheme.

New businesses will also be protected under the Scheme, with any business that has opened since April 2019 eligible for assistance. New business owners can find out more by accessing our FAQs for the Scheme.

The Scheme will apply retrospectively from 28 July 2021 and will run until 15 January 2022.  

To help landlords who provide their eligible tenants with rent relief, the Government will provide land tax relief of up to 25 per cent, in addition to any previous relief, with the support worth up to $100 million. In addition, small landlords who can demonstrate acute hardship will be eligible to apply for payments as part of a $20 million hardship fund. More information will be made available on the Business Victoria website.

For more information, tenants and landlords can access updates on our website, the new regulations and FAQs for the Scheme and our step-by-step process for tenants and landlords, or speak to us by calling 13 8722.