Support for your business during COVID-19

The following information was updated on Wednesday 5 August, 2020. 

Current restrictions

The Victorian Government announced Stage 4 restrictions are in place from 6pm on Sunday 2 August for metropolitan Melbourne.

Read the Premier's statement on business restrictions and download the guide for businesses that must close and those that can remain open.

You can also visit our COVID-19 information hub for information on all Yarra service changes.

Business support fund – expansion

To support businesses impacted by current restrictions, one-off grants of $10,000 will be made available to eligible businesses under the Business Support Fund – Expansion program.

Applications are open now, and close on 14 September 2020.

This program is in addition to the first round of the Business Support Fund, which closed on 1 June 2020.

Commercial tenancy relief scheme

The Victorian Government has announced a commercial tenancy relief scheme to alleviate financial hardship faced by tenants and landlords as a result of COVID-19. This includes:

  • a six-month moratorium on commercial tenancy evictions
  • a six-month freeze on rent increases for commercial tenants
  • a rental payment waiver or deferral, to be negotiated between tenant and landlord
  • a mediation service for commercial tenants and landlords to support fair tenancy negotiations

Visit the Victorian Small Business Commission website for further support.

Mental health support

No matter how the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting you, Beyond Blue has developed a range of information, strategies and expert advice to help support your social and emotional wellbeing.

Stay Home guide

During the first COVID-19 restrictions earlier this year, we made a map of over 300 local businesses still open for delivery and takeaway.

Now that we are entering another six weeks of restrictions, we're asking all businesses on the map to email us if your details need to be updated or removed from the map if you are closed.

If your business would like to be added to the map, email us with a brief description of what you're offering.

Extend your footpath trading

If the business next to you isn't using their footpath trading area, you can apply to use this space for your own tables and chairs, for free! 

Free mentoring

Book a free mentoring session with an experienced business mentor on the Small Business Bus (virtually or in-person).

Free workshops

Small Business Victoria are now delivering their workshops all online and for free.

Victorian Chamber of Commerce

Free membership (up to $700 value).

Free promotion for tourism businesses

The Australian Tourism Data Warehouse is Australia's national platform for digital tourism information. They are offering tourism businesses a free 12-month listing (usually $295) if you sign up before Monday 31 August.

$7.46 million support package

Yarra City Council is providing more than $7.4 million dollars of funding and other relief measures to ensure local businesses are supported during COVID-19 and the recovery that follows.

Small business grants

We have awarded more than $410,000 worth of quick-response funding to 106 local small businesses, providing support to our business community as they face the significant challenges caused by COVID-19.

Applications are now closed and were assessed by an independent panel.

The response to these grants was enormous and we received 493 applications. 106 successful small businesses will share in grants totalling $410,861. 

In addition to this, there was also $60,000 in grants for creative businesses, including live music venues, commercial galleries, rehearsal studios and sole-trader creatives.  

Permit refunds

As part of our support package, we have provided an automatic six-month refund (April to September 2020) on the following permits:

These refunds have returned over $600,000 to our local business owners. 

In addition to these refunds, we are also waiving fees for new applications of these permits.

No fees for business parking permits

Until 31 March 2021, all eligible businesses under the Parking permit policy will not be charged for business parking permits.

If you have an existing business parking permit due to expire before 31 March 2021, your permit will be renewed automatically at no cost. Your new permit will be valid for 12 months.

If you don't currently have a business parking permit and would like to apply for one before 31 March 2021, you will not be charged for this permit. Your permit will be valid for 12 months.