Support For Business

Council staff are reaching out to businesses within the Shire and will continue to check in. If you haven’t received a call, expect contact soon.

Buy Buloke Website

Buloke Shire Council has established a new online resource to continue the support of its local businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Buy Buloke website has been launched to provide the community with an easy to navigate website to browse local businesses and services as well as current trading terms and social media links.

View the website now at

Food Premises Fee Waiver 

As a part of the 2020/21 budget, Council adopted an initiative to offer local businesses which require registration under The Food Act 1984 (VIC) and/or the Public Health and Wellbeing Act 2008 (VIC) fee assistance for their 20/21 registration renewal fee to those who have been impacted by COVID-19.

Many eligible businesses have placed their application to this initiative and those are currently being assessed. If you haven’t received a form to and would like to apply for this initiative, please get in touch.

State and Federal Government Assistance

Sole Trader Support Fund

On 14 September 2020, the Victorian Government announced the $100 million Sole Trader Support Fund to provide extra support to eligible non-employing sole trader businesses to survive the impacts of continued COVID-19 shutdown restrictions.

This is for non-employing sole traders across Victoria that operate from commercial premises or locations, participate in JobKeeper and operate in specific sectors.

Through the Sole Trader Support Fund, around 30,000 businesses will receive a grant of $3,000. The Sole Trader Support Fund specifically targets businesses in industry sectors that have been restricted, heavily restricted or closed as a result of continued restrictions outlined in Victoria’s roadmap for reopening.

Third round of the Business Support Fund

Grants to support Victorian businesses that must stay closed or operate under restrictions until COVID Normal.

Through this third round of the Business Support Fund, eligible businesses will receive grants of $10,000, $15,000 or $20,000, depending on the business’ annual payroll.

Applications will remain open until funds are exhausted or until 11.59pm on 23 November 2020, whichever is earlier.

Extension of the JobKeeper Payment

The Government is extending the JobKeeper Payment by a further six months to March 2021.

Support will be targeted to businesses and not-for-profits that continue to be significantly impacted by the coronavirus. 

The payment rate will be reduced and a lower payment rate will be introduced for those who work fewer hours. Other eligibility rules remain unchanged.

Outdoor Eating and Entertainment Package

Grants to support businesses adapt to outdoor dining and entertainment.

The Victorian Government is investing $58 million into the Outdoor Eating and Entertainment Package to help businesses prepare for COVID Normal by creating safe outdoor dining spaces.

Eligible businesses can apply for a grant of $5,000 to pay for the practical things like umbrellas, outdoor furniture, screens and other equipment which will help the indoor dining and cafe experiences Victorians love move outdoors. Grants can also assist businesses with training, marketing and other costs associated with adapting new or expanding existing outdoor dining or entertainment.

Grant applications open on Monday 28 September 2020.

Licensed Hospitality Venue Fund

Supporting Victorian hospitality businesses through coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions.  The Victorian Government is providing support for licensed pubs, clubs, hotels, bars, restaurants and reception centres to help them survive through ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions.

To be eligible for a grant from this program, applicants must:

Operate a licensed pub, club, hotel, bar, restaurant or reception centre under a general, full club or on-premises liquor licence issued by the Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation, and

Have premises that serve patrons and holds a Class 2 or 3 Service Sector – Certificate of Registration under the Food Act 1984 (Vic) issued by a local council.

Note: businesses that are eligible for Licensed Hospitality Business Grant will not be eligible for third round of the Business Support Fund.

Grant applications will open in the coming days.

Payroll tax waived for eligible businesses

This measure was announced on 21 March 2020.

Businesses with annual Victorian taxable wages up to $3 million will have their payroll tax for the 2019-20 financial year waived.

Eligible businesses must continue to lodge returns but do not need to make further payments for this financial year.

The State Revenue Office will directly contact eligible businesses in relation to an emergency tax relief refund of payroll tax already paid in the financial year.

These businesses can also defer paying payroll tax for the first quarter of the 2020-21 financial year.

More information about the administration of these relief measures will be sent directly to eligible businesses.

Grants for Business Chambers and Trader Groups

Grants for metropolitan and regional business chambers and trader groups to help their members transition into COVID Normal.

The $3 million Grants for Business Chambers and Trader Groups program provides funding to Victorian business chambers and trader groups for initiatives that will help support their members as we move into recovery and COVID Normal.

Grants of $10,000, $20,000 or $50,000 will be awarded to eligible groups through a competitive application process.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) business support – information on restrictions and support to help your workplace plan and respond to coronavirus

For the latest COVID-19 public health information please visit