Coffs Harbour City Council
SUPPLEMENTARY AGENDA ITEM
COUNCIL ADMINISTRATION BUILDING
COFF AND CASTLE STREETS, COFFS HARBOUR
26 March 2020
Order of Business
MM20/02 COVID-19 Local Business Support Plan....................................................... 1
1. Encourage everyone to buy local and support local business and community #buylocal #supportlocal.
2. Acknowledge the current response to the COVID-19 pandemic as outlined in the attached Local Business Support Plan – Phase 1 (Attachment 1).
3. Resolve immediately the following actions to enhance the Local Business Support Plan (Phase 1):
3.1. Amend Council’s Rates, Charges and Fees – Financial Hardship Policy to apply to non-residential properties;
3.2. Suspend new debt recovery actions for outstanding accounts where financial hardship is apparent;
3.3. Remove account keeping fees;
3.4. Remove late and reminder fees;
3.5. Remove credit card surcharges;
3.6. Support procurement from local businesses;
3.7. Defer the 2020/21 Special Rate for city centre businesses and associated infrastructure works to the same value; and
3.8. Loan repayment relief for existing loans to community groups.
4. Receive a report at the next Council meeting which addresses, as a minimum, the following options to assist local small businesses and community groups (Phase 2):
4.1. Relief through rent abatements for leases and licences of Council managed properties; and
4.2. Waiving of fees for small/local business related inspections.
5. Initiate the development of a Recovery Plan (Phase 3) for the Coffs Harbour community which will include:
5.1. A focus on broad business and organisation recovery across multiple sectors to impacted businesses and industries, to augment Federal and State Government programs; and
5.2. Strong advocacy with other levels of government.
6. Thanks the community for their support of our health workers and key front line workers and acknowledge that the Commonwealth and State health authorities are the lead agencies for this global pandemic.
Council recognises the pressure and uncertainty local businesses are experiencing right now.
There is a whole of Government response to enabling local businesses to continue providing vital services to our communities and importantly helping them stay in business.
Our priority is making sure that local businesses feel supported, are well informed and know where and how to get the best advice to get funding and practical resources.