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Hair & Beauty Australia Industry Association


Posted April 27, 2020

HABA understands that these are the most trying of times for salon owners across the country, with our beauty salon owners forced to close and our hairdressers facing an uncertain future in the coming days and months. All small business owners are struggling to make ends meet and there are a number of different ways that state and federal governments are tackling economic hardship during the Corona Virus Crisis.


State governments particularly are offering a range of financial relief packages for small businesses, including salons, to ensure that they stay afloat during these unprecedented times. Below HABA have broken down the relief options available state-by-state to ensure that salon owners know what support measures are available to them in their business location. Together we can get through this.


For personalised advice on your business and what government measures you are applicable for during the Covid-19 Crisis, HABA Members can call our team of legal specialists on (02) 9221 9911 and press option 2. Alternatively, you can email and one of our team will be in touch as soon as they possibly can. Please bear in mind that this is a time of extremely high demand for HABA and allow time for us to respond to your request.





Payroll tax

New South Wales has waived payroll tax for the next three months, until the end of the financial year.

The waiver is available for businesses with payroll of up to $10 million, and is expected to be applied automatically. Those businesses will also be given a three-month deferral on payment of payroll tax

Businesses with payrolls of $10 million or more, will be able to defer payment of their payroll tax for six months.

The state is also bringing the next round of payroll tax cuts forward, meaning the payroll tax threshold will rise to $1 million in the financial year 2020-21.


Fees waived

The state government is scrapping fees and charges for businesses in vulnerable sectors, including for bars, cafes, restaurants and tradespeople.

The total allocated for this measure is $80 million, but it is not yet clear exactly which fees will be waived, or for how long.

The measure will be administered through Service NSW, and more details are expected to be communicated through this channel.

Gaming tax payments will be deferred for clubs, pubs and hotels for six months, as well as lotteries tax. However, this deferral is conditional on businesses using those funds to retain staff.

The parking space levy will also be deferred for six months.

Commercial tenancies

The government will defer commercial rent payments on government properties for businesses will less than 20 employees..




Payroll tax refunds

The Andrews government’s $1.7 billion package includes refunds of payroll tax for small businesses.

Businesses with payroll of less than $3 million will be eligible for a full refund of payroll tax for the 2019-2020 financial year. Payments are set to begin this week, and are expected to be issued automatically.

The government has stressed that this payment is a refund, not a loan.

Payroll tax deferrals

Small businesses will also be eligible for a deferral of payroll tax payments for the first three month of the 2020-2021 financial year. Payments for this period will now be due in January 2021.

Business support fund

Businesses in the hospitality, tourism, accommodation, arts, entertainment and retail sectors may also receive additional assistance through a new business support fund to be established by the Victorian government.

While details are yet to be released about what kinds of financial support will be available, the government said it will be administered in partnership with the Australian Industry Group, the Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Australian Hotels Association.

The fund will support businesses that may not be eligible for payroll tax refunds because their payrolls exceed $3 million.

Businesses can register their interest in the fund by filling out this online form.

Payment times, waived fees and rent relief

The Government will pay all outstanding supplier invoices within 10 business days – ensuring funds reach businesses and the economy faster. The private sector is urged to do the same where possible.



All small and medium businesses (annual payrolls of $6.5 million or less) in Queensland will be eligible for:

  • a two-month refund of payroll tax, giving an average of nearly $9,000 cash
  • a three-month payroll tax holiday, saving an average of $13,360
  • deferral of all payroll tax payments for the rest of 2020.


Payroll Tax Relief

$950 million payroll tax relief Immediate payroll tax refunds will be provided for COVID-19 affected businesses. Eligible businesses can also apply for deferral until the end of 2020 and a payroll tax holiday for 3 months.

Electricity Rebates

Sole traders, small and medium businesses will get a $500 rebate on their power bill. Any business consuming less than 100,000 kilowatt hours will receive the rebate, which will be automatically applied on business electricity bills.


Business Loans

Applications are now open for the Queensland Government’s $500 million COVID-19 Jobs Support Loan scheme. This scheme is for Queensland businesses and non-profit organisations financially affected by COVID-19 to retain employees and maintain their operations. View loan guidelines here before starting your application.

Low interest loans of up to $250,000 are available to assist with carry-on expenses such as employee wages, rent and rates and other related expenditure. Eligible business types include sole traders, partnerships, private and public companies and Trusts.





Fast-track payroll tax relief for small businesses

  • The payroll tax threshold will be increased to $1 million from 1 July 2020, six months earlier than originally planned.
  • 11,000 WA businesses will benefit from the cut in payroll tax.

Waiver of 2019-20 payroll tax available to small and medium sized businesses

  • Payroll tax will be waived for a four-month period between March 1, 2020 to June 30, 2020 for small-to-medium sized businesses with Australia-wide annual wages of less than $7.5 million in 2019-20.
  • This will deliver around $165 million in relief to around 10,700 businesses that will not be required to pay payroll tax for this period.
  • Employers, or groups of employers, with Australian taxable wages below $5 million at 29 February 2020, do not have to apply for the waiver – the payroll tax waiver can automatically be claimed for March to June 2020 by:
    • declaring WA taxable wages as normal in Revenue Online; and
    • recording the value of WA taxable wages as exempt wages using the ‘Other Exempt Wages’ field.
  • Employers, or groups of employers, with Australian taxable wages of $5 million or above (capped at $7.5 million) at 29 February 2020, or new employers registered for payroll tax from 1 March 2020, can apply to defer lodgement and payment of returns.

Energy bills

The government is offering small businesses a one-off credit of $2,500 for Synergy and Horizon Power bills.

This is available to current customers, as of March 31, that use less than 50 megawatt hours per annum.

The credit will be distributed from May 1, to help businesses reduce future electricity bills.

The state government has also put a halt to any power or water disconnections due to late payments, and no interest will be charged on deferred bills.

Read more about the first Western Australia stimulus here.



Payroll tax relief

South Australian businesses with an annual payroll of up to $4 million will be eligible for a six-month waiver of their payroll tax, starting from April.

Businesses with payroll of more than $4 million will be able to defer their payroll tax payments for six months, if they can show they have seen a significant impact to their cashflow, because of the coronavirus.



Payroll tax waiver

Businesses with payrolls of up to $5 million will also be able to apply for this package, but eligibility will be based on how significantly the virus has affected the business.

Further details on this criteria have not yet been released.


Power bill relief

The second package also introduced a freeze on water and electricity bills.

Some small businesses will have their water and electricity bills waived for their first quarterly bill, received after April 1. Businesses on tariffs 22, 94, 82, and 75 will have their bills waived, as well as small businesses on market contracts that could access these tariffs.

Electricity bills will be capped for the next financial year, and water bills will be frozen.

Business Support Loan Scheme

Loans from $20 000 up to $250 000 are available to assist eligible businesses for the purpose of supporting business continuity, viability, and sustainability during the Coronavirus period. The loans are now open.


Business vehicle registration relief package


To support significantly impacted Tasmanian small businesses, $9.75 million in the business vehicle registration savings and deferrals is available. Small businesses looking to suspend activity due to the COVID-19 business downturn and trading restrictions can apply to the Registrar of Motor Vehicles to freeze their business vehicle registrations for both light and heavy vehicles. Registrations can be reactivated at no cost to them when the business restarts. The maximum period that a registration can be frozen is 12 months.


For advice on eligibility or for assistance with your application please call Registration and Licensing Services on 1300 135 513 or email


Payroll tax

Small businesses that can show their business has been hurt by COVID-19 will have their payroll tax waived for a period of six months.

This waiver is available for employers that have a total payroll of less than $7.5 million, and that have seen a 30% drop in turnover.

Businesses with a higher total payroll that have also seen a 30% decline in turnover will be eligible for a six-month payroll tax deferral.

Bill relief

For small businesses that can show they have been negatively affected by COVID-19, the government is cutting power and water bills by 50%, for the next six months.

Rent relief

In a bid to help businesses struggling to keep up with the cost of their lease, the NT government has suggested it will offer commercial landlords the same support as other businesses receive.

However that help “comes with strings attached”, Gunner said.

If a tenant can “demonstrate hardship” because of the coronavirus and requests assistance from their landlord, the landlord must negotiate rent relief with them.

“Then, and only then, will the landlord be eligible for support like payroll tax relief, or any of the measures we have already announced.”





Other business fee waivers

The government will waive fees for 12 months from 1 April 2020 for businesses that require an infection control license such as beauty therapists, nail salons, tattoo parlors, and dentists. You do not need to contact Health Protection Services, this will automatically happen as part of the normal licensing process.

Electricity rebates

Small business owners with electricity usage below 100 megawatts per year will see rebates of $750 automatically applied to their next electricity bill in around June or July 2020. The rebate will apply regardless of whether customers are on standing or market offers. You do not need to contact your electricity supplier as this will be automatically applied.

Six-month waiver of payroll tax

All businesses whose operations are directly affected by the prohibited activities list such as gyms and indoor sporting venues, cinemas, beauty therapists and nail salons will be eligible to receive a six-month waiver of payroll tax from April to September 2020.

Businesses will need to complete a simple online application form on the ACT Revenue Office website to confirm their eligibility.

For those who lodge their payroll tax return monthly, the first waiver will be applied to the March payroll tax return, which is usually payable by 7 April.

For those who lodge their payroll tax return annually, the first waiver will be applied to their account when their return is received at the end of the 2019-20 financial year.


It’s important for salon owners to make sure they take advantage of whatever financial relief options are available to them on a state-by-state basis. This truly is key to ensuring that your business stays afloat, and when done in conjunction with grants available for salon owners and federal stimulus packages, could be the best way to keep your doors open during this crisis. Apply for and claim anything you think you’re applicable to – salon owners need all the help they can get right now.


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