The ACT government has designed a program to encourage consumers to spend money locally, setting up an electronic voucher system that eligible local businesses need to register for.

Consumers need to be over 18 years and also need to register. They will receive a daily pack of discount vouchers worth $40 to use at participating businesses (dependent upon minimum spend), and the ACT government will then reimburse the business – more information here.

Which businesses are eligible?

To be eligible a business must:

  • Have a physical shopfront in the ACT; and
  • Have received JobKeeper at some point during 2020; and
  • Have less than $10m in turnover per annum; and
  • Be in the retail, tourism, accommodation, arts and recreation, personal services and hospitality services.

How long does it run for?

The program will run from 9 until 21 December 2020 or until the allocated funds are exhausted.

Even if your business doesn’t fit the bill, pass the word on and continue to buy local!

George Michael and Andrew Ridgeley

We would like to welcome Jasmine Tooby who has joined our accounting team recently.

Jasmine is a smart, keen young professional who is enjoying gradually getting to know more about our lovely clients.

Welcome Jasmine!

Jasmine Tooby

JobKeeper 2.0 is imminent, and the rules are being written on the fly – please find below a summary of what we know so far in relation to the first extension period, and for more detail please read the NTAA’s fact sheet. We have also developed a JobKeeper 2.0 Checklist that you may like to use when assessing individual employee eligibility to ensure that you use the correct pay rate.

For those currently receiving JobKeeper and those new to JobKeeper, in order to receive it after 28 September (extension period 1) you will need to show an ACTUAL 30% GST decline in turnover for the quarter ending 30 September 2020 (via your BAS), relative to the September 2019 quarter.

There are also changes to the employee eligibility test:

  • Reference period for employee eligibility covers the 28 days prior to either:
    • 1 March 2020 (being 2/2/2020 – 29/2/2020) OR
    • 1 July 2020 (being 3/6/2020 – 30/6/2020)
Importantly when selecting the above reference period an employer must use the period that will give the employee the highest rate of JobKeeper.
  • Hours of work (during the reference period) is determined as follows:
    • Where total hours worked were at least 80 hours in the reference period, the employer receives $1,200 per fortnight
    • Where total hours worked were less than 80 hours in the reference period, the employer receives $750 per fortnight

The government has already announced various modifications to the test (for example where an employee begins employment part way through the reference period), so please contact us for assistance in determining your eligibility if your business doesn’t fall nicely into one of the above boxes.

Please note: eligibility for each of the new extension periods (28/9/2020 to 3/1/2021 and 4/1/2021 to 28/3/2021) needs to be reviewed and eligibility determined separately, so you will need to test for extension period 1 and extension period 2 (looking at actual GST for the December quarter) independently. If you fail the test for extension period 1 and JobKeeper ceases you can re-test for extension period 2 when the time comes (and potentially re-commence receiving JobKeeper if the eligibility criteria is met).

Finally, new notification forms are required to be submitted to the ATO when entering JobKeeper 2.0 (and are as yet unavailable) and employers will be required to notify all employees of their new eligible payment rate within 7 days of enrolling with the ATO.

As always, please contact your friendly Halletts team member for assistance in navigating these complicated waters!

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