Victorian businesses hit hard by repeated coronavirus lockdowns will be able to apply for new relief grants.
The state and federal government on Wednesday announced a joint $400 million package, split 50-50 between the two levels of government.
A $156 million business continuity fund will give $5000 grants to about 30,000 businesses hit by capacity limits under public health restrictions.
Twenty-four sectors are eligible including gyms, cafes, restaurants, catering services and hairdressers.
Businesses in the Melbourne CBD can get an additional $2000, recognising reduced foot traffic due to office density limits.
More cash will be added to the Victorian Government's support for licensed hospitality and alpine venues, with $70 million for the licensed hospitality venue fund 2021 and $9.8 million for alpine business support.
“Having battled five lockdowns Victorian businesses have been amongst the hardest hit in the nation,” federal Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said in a statement.
“No amount of support can make up for what business owners have experienced over the last year and half, but this latest package will support them as they reopen after this latest lockdown.”
There will be $85 million set aside to support small businesses with a payroll of $10 million and under that have not been eligible under existing business support funds.
If those businesses have experienced a 70 per cent or greater reduction in revenue they will be eligible for grants of up to $5000.
And an $80 million commercial tenancies relief scheme will return, fully funded by the Victorian government, so landlords can provide rent relief to their tenants.
“We're calling for good-faith negotiations between tenants and landlords, and the hardship fund will mean landlords who find reasonable common ground will be supported,” Victorian Small Business Minister Jaala Pulford said in a statement.