With South East Queensland still feeling the effects of its recent spate of COVID-19 lockdowns – and Cairns experiencing a short-lived lockdown this week – the Queensland hospitality and tourism sectors have borne the brunt of the shutdowns.

In response, a new support package has been released for Queensland businesses in the hospitality and tourism sectors who have been impacted by these recent COVID-19 lockdowns.

Your hospitality or tourism business may be eligible for a range of rebate, fee and payroll tax relief measures under the $47.75 million tourism and hospitality sector COVID-19 lockdown support package.

A snapshot to the packages is below, but please get in touch if you want to discuss the specific measures in more detail, to assess your eligibility or to access these packages.

Payroll tax deferral

  • Tourism and hospitality businesses that lodge payroll tax returns monthly can apply to defer paying their payroll tax liability due in August 2021 for six months. If your liability due in August has already been paid, you can apply to defer next month's payroll tax liability.

12-month state land rent deferral for tourism operators

  • Rent deferral is available for eligible tourism operators on state land for the period 1 July 2021 to 30 June 2022. More information to come on this.

Fee waiver and refunds for commercial tourism daily passenger fees

  • Tourist companies operating in national parks, conservation parks, recreation areas or state forests – which includes whale watching operations – may have fees waived or refunded between 1 July 2021 and 30 June 2022.

12-month fee waiver or refund of inbound tour operator fees

  • The government has identified that inbound tour operators may benefit from renewal application fees being waived (or where paid, refunded) to mitigate the impact this may have on their businesses. This support is available to inbound tour operators for fee renewals up until 30 June 2022.

COVID-19 marine tourism rebate

  • This support is available for offsetting the berthing fees for marine tourism vessel operators at privately-owned or privately-operated marinas in eligible local government areas between 1 July 2021 and 30 June 2022.

Liquor licensing fees waived for 2021–22

  • Tourism and hospitality businesses’ licensing fees for 2021–22 can be waived or refunded if they were licensed under the Liquor Act or Wine Industry Acts as at 30 June 2021.

2021 COVID-19 Business Support Grants expanded to include large tourism and hospitality businesses statewide

  • Large tourism and hospitality businesses statewide are now included in the 2021 COVID-19 Business Support Grants of $5,000. Eligibility guidelines will also be expanded to enable businesses to claim the impact of the South East Queensland and Cairns lockdowns, and any further Queensland lockdowns in August.

Queensland COVID-19 cleaning rebate

  • Also relevant to some in the tourist and hospitality sector, small, medium and not-for-profit businesses – in all industries – will be able to apply for a rebate of up to 80 per cent of the cost of professional cleaning (up to $10,000 ex GST) if your business is a confirmed COVID-19 exposure site.

We are helping clients assess eligibility and access these support packages – and a range of others – so please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

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