In separate press conferences yesterday (28 July) the NSW and Federal Governments have announced increased financial support for those impacted by the recent COVID-19 lockdown.

Following the announcement of the lockdown being extended to 28 August 2021, it was also shared that substantial increases in payments would be distributed via the existing government frameworks.

What employers need to know – JobSaver

Turnover Threshold Increased – From 18 July 2021 businesses with a turnover between $75,000 and $250m (increased from $50m) for the 30 June 2020 year will now have access to JobSaver. Businesses can now apply and receive payments from 18 July 2021.

Maximum Payment Increased – From 2 August 2021 the maximum payment will increase from $10,000 to $100,000 per week.

Business that were already eligible for JobSaver will receive a maximum of $10,000 per week from 18 July 2021, but from 2 August 2021 payments could increase to a maximum of $100,000 per week.

The payment available to non-employing businesses has remained unchanged at $1k per week.

There are also no changes to other eligibility criteria or the method of calculations, being 40% of payroll for work performed in NSW.

Applications are open and can be lodged here

What employees need to know

Increased Payments – From 2 August 2021 those who have lost 20 or more hours of work will receive an increase from $600 to $750 per week. Those who have lost less than 20 hours will received an increase from $375 to $450.

Although payments will not be backdated, those who are already enrolled will see an automatic increase for the week starting 2 August 2021.

No other changes to eligibility criteria have been announced.

Instructions on how to claim can be found here

Eased restrictions for Building & Construction

The NSW Government has also eased restriction for the Building and Construction industry. Namely in respect of home renovations and outside of the 8 LGAs of concern being Fairfield, Blacktown, Cumberland, Campbelltown, Canterbury-Bankstown, Liverpool, Parramatta and Georges River.

From Saturday, 31 July 2021 “non occupied construction” can recommence with the primary condition being workers cannot be in contact with home occupants. It is expected that those occupants are away from the property whilst the works are underway. There will a maximum cap of 2 tradespeople internally and 5 externally.

Preparatory works, such as deliveries and safety preparation, are also allowed to commence from tomorrow 29 July 2021.

Worksites are also allowed to remain open on Sundays and public holidays up until Christmas as to make up for lost time.

Other changes (Individuals)

Individuals currently receiving Federal Social Security payments will also be able to apply for a $200 per week increase as of 3 August 2021. Applicants must show they’ve lost at least 8 hours of work. This is designed to bridge the gap in amounts received from the COVID-19 Disaster Payment and pre-existing social security measures.