The Tasmanian Government has delivered the largest economic and social rescue package in the country, proportionate to Gross State Product, including more than $60 million towards our small business support grant programs, which has provided over 18,200 grants to Tasmanian small businesses across the state.
This is in addition to many initiatives supporting Tasmanian businesses and jobs, including the interest free loan scheme, waiver and freeze of government and utility fees, as well as funding towards peak business and industry bodies such as the TCCI and Regional Chambers of Commerce, the Tasmanian Small Business Council and the Tasmanian Hospitality Association to deliver more support to businesses across the state with assistance and advice.
We are equally focused on recovery and rebooting our economy. This is why we are working hard to deliver our record $3.1 billion construction blitz over two years, to stimulate investment in the private sector, grow business confidence and create around 15,000 jobs.
Right to Information documents released today confirm the Government has supported a wide range of sectors through our small business hardship grant program, with a total of 2870 businesses across Tasmania receiving support. Of note is that a greater number of grants were received by businesses in areas most heavily impacted by the pandemic and trade restrictions, including our hospitality and tourism sectors.
Importantly, 72 per cent of applicants were successful in receiving a hardship grant, with a total of over $26 million provided across the state through the Small Business Hardship Grant program.
In order to support as many eligible businesses as possible, an additional $20 million was allocated across the small business support grant programs. This was administered by the Department of State Growth, which worked to apply a fair and consistent approach, with the objective of distributing the available funding to support as many businesses as possible across Tasmania, including those that otherwise would not have been competitive in receiving funding under the hardship grant program.
The Tasmanian Government acknowledges there was high demand from the Tasmanian business community in response to the grant programs.
The Department of State Growth continues to review individual applications of businesses seeking a review or feedback from Business Tasmania in relation to their Small Business Hardship grant application. As at 8 July 2020, the Department has received 150 applications and 25 recipients have received additional funding as a result of the review. The Department will continue to directly notify applicants of the outcome of their review.
Anyone seeking a review or wishing to discuss the outcome of their review is encouraged to contact Business Tasmania.
Businesses who need additional information on other support available, including information and access to free business advice through the Enterprise Centres Tasmania and digital coaching through the Digital Ready Program, are encouraged to contact Business Tasmania on 1800 440 026 or via www.business.tas.gov.au.
The RTI responses can be found here: https://www.stategrowth.tas.gov.au/about/right_to_information/disclosure_log