Last updated: 31 March 2020 10.30am





The Government is introducing a subsidy program to support employees and businesses. The JobKeeper Payment is designed to help businesses affected by the Coronavirus to cover the costs of their employees’ wages, so that more
employees can retain their job and continue to earn an income.

Keeping Australians in work and businesses in business will lay the foundations for a stronger economic recovery once the Coronavirus crisis passes.

The Government has announced its intention to pass additional legislation to introduce this new measure.

If legislation is enacted, support will be directed to employers to pass on to employees.

More information about the JOBKEEPER PAYMENT HERE
+ JobKeeper Payment - Information for Employers HERE



Stage 3 restrictions in effect from midnight tonight (Mar 30)

9am, 30 March 2020 Source: Victorian Government  

As agreed by National Cabinet, gatherings will be restricted to no more than 2 people except for members of your immediate household and for work or education.

Under the Stage 3 restrictions, the new directions will mean that what was previously advice about staying home, will become enforceable.

Playgrounds, skate parks and outdoor gyms will also close.

These Stage 3 restrictions will come into effect from 11:59pm Monday 30 March 2020. They will be in place for 4 weeks and reviewed as required.

If people breach these directions, they face on-the-spot fines of $1,652 for individuals and $9,913 for businesses. Larger fines can also be issued through the courts.

We’re also telling Victorians – there are only 4 reasons to be out:

  • shopping for what you need - food and essential supplies
  • medical, care or compassionate needs
  • exercise in compliance with the public gathering requirements
  • work and study if you can’t work or learn remotely

As we deal with this health crisis, we know that for many Victorians it’s an economic crisis as well.

That’s why a moratorium on evictions will be introduced for the next 6 months for residential and commercial tenants who are experiencing financial distress due to the impact of coronavirus. This will apply across all states and territories.

All of the following will no longer be taking place:
  • Cafes & Restaurants - takeaway and delivery can continue
  • Food Courts in shopping centers - takeaway from those food outlets can continue
  • Auction Houses and gatherings together in auction rooms
  • Real Estate Auctions and Open House Inspections
  • Outdoor and Indoor Markets - States and territories have very different arrangements in terms of the types of markets they have, and they'll be making those decisions specific to their states and territories
  • Beauty Therapy, Tanning, Waxing, Nail Salons, Tattoo Parlors and Spa and Massage Parlors (excludes health-related services in those areas, physiotherapists, things of that nature, health-related and allied health services)
  • Cinemas, Nightclubs, Casinos, Gaming or Gambling venues, Adult Entertainment venues, Concert venues, Theatres, Arenas, Auditoriums and Stadiums.
  • Amusement Parks and Arcades
  • Play Centres
  • Community and Recreation Centres, Health Clubs, Fitness Centres, Yoga, Barre and Spin facilities, Saunas, Bathhouses, Wellness Centres (Boot camps and personal training is limited to a maximum of 10 people and the social distancing arrangements must be strictly enforced)
  • Social Sporting based activities, Swimming Pools
  • Galleries, Museums, National Institutions, Historic Sites, Libraries, Community Centres, Youth Centres, Local Government and Non-essential Facilities
  • Community Facilities such as community halls, clubs, RSLs, PCYCs.
  • Places of Worship

Other Restrictions:
  • Government announces level 3 restrictions for dentistry
    Level 3 restrictions have been placed due to increased community transmission of Covid-19 and the increased threat to the community. This means that unless you are experiencing an URGENT dental concern (pain, trauma, facial swelling, infection or have a serious dental issue that can’t wait 4-6 months without treatment) it is safer to stay home rather than come into your dentist. Please contact your dentist and they will be able to determine which issues are urgent and which are best deferred.
  • Hairdressers and Barber Shops - can continue to provide those services but need to strictly manage the social distancing and limitations of the number of people in their premise. So that's four square meters per person. And on top of that, to restrict the amount of time a patron is in the premises to no more than 30 minutes and preferably less.
  • Weddings - can continue where it is just the couple, the celebrant and the witnesses. That's no more than five people. And the four square metre rule has to be observed.
  • Funerals - no more than 10 persons, observing the four square metre rule per person and social distancing practices.

If you have any questions about your business’s ability to open under restrictions you can contact the Business Victoria coronavirus hotline by calling 13 22 15.


Police Presence in Ballarat CBD

Police are more than aware that there maybe opportunities for the criminal element within the community to create issues for businesses within the Ballarat CBD and surrounds that have been forced to close due to Covid-19. Police will continue to pro-actively patrol the Ballarat CBD as their functions / duties to the community WILL NOT change. Please email Sergeant Rick Nield rick.nield@police.vic.gov.au with your businesses after-hours contact details in case they are required to attend your premises during this shut down period. 


Rate Payments Temporarily Suspended

The City of Ballarat will extend the final rate instalment due date from 31 May 2020 to 30 June 2020 without penalty for businesses directly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The charging of interest on overdue rates has also been suspended indefinitely. 

More information HERE


Stay Home


The City of Ballarat, Commerce Ballarat, Committee for Ballarat and Ballarat Regional Tourism are calling on Daniel Andrews and Scott Morrison to continue to be bold and brave in their decision making on flattening the COVID-19 curve. And while we await more bold decisions from our nation’s leaders, we’re also leading bold movements of our own.

As city leaders, we’re urging the Ballarat community to stay home and do their bit to flatten the curve across our region. We are concerned that the cases in Australia have now risen to more than 2,000. We may only have five positive cases of COVID-19 in Ballarat, but we know that this figure will only increase. Full media release HERE

Understanding that most people in business have their brains in flight mode and clear thinking is difficult to manage under such incredible pressure. We encourage you to take a quiet ten minutes at some stage in the next few days and try and balance your racing thoughts...

Credit: Mike Boyle, Sales Shift

Economic Support for Businesses

Federal -

+ Delivering support for business investment READ FACT SHEET

+ Cash flow assistance for businesses READ FACT SHEET

+ Economic Response to the Coronavirus READ FACT SHEET

State -

Economic Survival Package To Support Businesses And Jobs. Premier Daniel Andrews and Treasurer Tim Pallas announced a $1.7 billion economic survival and jobs package, which has been developed following discussions at National Cabinet and complements the work of the Federal Government. More information HERE

As part of a $1.7 billion economic survival package, the Victorian Government has announced $500 million to establish a Business Support Fund to assist small to medium businesses most impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak. Register your interest in receiving more details of the program here: https://bit.ly/39nPWIF

Businesses across the state can now access information on dealing with COVID-19 by calling the Business Victoria hotline on 13 22 15.

Podcast - Kay Jackson, Simplex Insurance

Our member Kay Jackson from Simplex Insurance recently participated in this podcast regarding COVID-19. 


Ballarat Resource Connect

The Business, Resource and Sharing Initiative

This is a support group for Ballarat businesses and people during the Coronavirus crisis. Industries are already being impacted by the state emergency with some having to make cuts to staff and resources, while other industries are needing additional staff and resources. The idea of this group is to provide a platform for business to connect resources that are in demand with resources that are available.

For example, if your business has staff or resources (i.e. trucks, product, equipment) that are no longer being used, this group provides a place to advertise them to businesses who may be scaling up during the crisis. If your business is looking for the above commodities, please post in this group to connect to a business that may be able to offer their services during this time.


Ballarat Initiatives 

Quick Links

Australian Taxation Office

The ATO are administering the following new government measures:

Businesses impacted by COVID-19 can phone the ATO's Emergency Support Infoline on 1800 806 218 for help tailored to your circumstances.