Boost for Tasmanian Businesses as Cases Steady

By AAP
May 20, 2020 Updated: May 20, 2020

Small businesses will get more of a boost in Tasmania as the government tries to stop any more from going under while COVID-19 cases start to flatten.

More Tasmanian small businesses will see some financial reprieve from the financial devastation of coronavirus, with funding being spread further across the sector.

Premier Peter Gutwein recently announced an additional $20 million was going towards the Small Business Emergency Support and Hardship grant programs, under which more than 15,000 businesses have received financial support.

Business Minister Sarah Courtney said applications for the grants was unprecedented, therefore the government was redirecting the $20 million so more businesses had access to it.

Some of the additional funding will go towards smaller hardship grants of $4000, with eligible businesses to be assessed against a lower threshold. 

The government estimates the changes will mean approximately 1900 more small businesses will be supported through the small business support grant programs.

Meanwhile, the Tasmanian Prison Service has introduced virtual visits so inmates can connect with friends and family during the coronavirus pandemic.

More than 170 inmates at the Risdon Prison facility have connected with loved ones online, including one who had a virtual visit from his family in the United States, the first time he has seen them in more than two years.

A total of 421 virtual visits have been facilitated under the supervision of Tasmania Prison Service (TPS) staff.

The state’s total cases remained at 226 for the fifth consecutive day.

By Christine McGinn