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COVID-19 RESOURCE CENTRE

ITourism Geelong & The Bellarine will be updating this page regularly with information provided by Victoria’s Department of Health and Human Services, the Federal Department of HealthTourism Australia, Victorian Tourism Industry Council VTIC and other government announcements as we receive them.

WHAT WE’RE doing

As a team, we’re ensuring work progresses on all of our important projects. As circumstances change, we’re adjusting timelines and plans to ensure that we’re fully prepared for not only the current situation, but the future too.

We’re actively monitoring and advocating on behalf of the tourism industry for our region and will provide all the relevant support and advice right here. Or just give us a call.

Our Team

In line with the City of Greater Geelong directions, many of our team will be working remotely. Team Tourism is available should you have any questions or need additional help – these arrangements will remain in place until further advice.

info@tourismgeelongbellarine.com.au
03 5223 2588
Monday – Friday – 9:00am – 5:00pm
Tourism Greater Geelong and The Bellarine

Our Approach to Visitor Servicing 

The Geelong Visitor Information Centre at the Wool Museum will be open Monday to Sunday – 10am-3pm. 

Geelong Waterfront Visitor Information Booth (The Carousel) will be open Monday to Sunday – 10.30am – 4.30pm. 

Other centres are not currently staffed by volunteers, however brochures are readily available during business hours. Outside of these hours or for more information, travellers can reach our team from 9am – 5pm, 7 days per week via 1800 755 611 or vic@tourismgeelongbellarine.com.au

COVID SAFE roadmap– STAY SAFE, STAY OPEN – effective  26 March.

The information below is in effect as of Friday, 26 March 2021. 

Face masks only required in high-risk areas such as on public transport, in taxis and rideshares and in aged care and hospital settings. 

Physical distancing (1.5m) and careful hygiene measures remain important for all Victorians.

Record keeping continues to be an important tool for helping Victoria to stay safe and stay open. Businesses must record the details of all visitors – customers, suppliers, etc. – and should use the Victorian Government’s free QR code service to do so. Indoor venues not using electronic record keeping, a density quotient of 1 per 4 sqm applies.

Work: Workers may attend onsite as required, no capacity limits.

Public gatherings: Up to 200 people can gather outdoors from any number of households.

Visitors to the home: Up to 100 visitors can visit a home in a day.

It is mandatory for every Victorian business with on-site operations to have a COVIDSafe Plan. Random spot checks are occurring to ensure businesses are meeting these obligations.

If you suspect you may have COVID-19 or require more guidance call the dedicated hotline – open 24 hours, 7 days 1800 675 398

See full list of restriction changes here. 

Statewide Restrictions

Current Step: COVIDSafe Summer (Updated 26 March, 11:59pm)

The Industry Guidelines include a lot of useful information on how to setup your workplace, key considerations for employers and more detail on patron numbers and protection measures.

Hospitality

  • Open with COVIDSafe requirements.
  • No group limits.
  • No enforced time limit.

Council has also implemented plans for expanded outdoor dining spaces, and we recommend you contact your local body with any questions or an expression of interest:

City of Greater Geelong – contact the Concierge service on 52725272.
Borough of Queenscliffe – info@queenscliffe.vic.gov.au
Golden Plains Shire – business@gplains.vic.gov.au

Accommodation

  • Open with COVIDSafe requirements.
  • Private gathering limits apply within accommodation venues –  the person or household booking the accommodation can have up to 100 visitors.
  • Density quotient of 1 patron per 2sqm in communal spaces. 

Seated entertainment venues (indoors and outdoors)

  • Open with COVIDSafe requirements.
  • Open, for indoor spaces at 75% of seated capacity up to 1000 patrons per space.
  • Over 1000 patrons must operate under the Public Events Framework.
  • Density quotient of 1 per 2sqm in foyers, bars, bathrooms etc. 

Outdoor Attractions and Experiences

  • Open with COVIDSafe requirements.
  • Operating at 75% fixed seated capacity up to 1000 patrons, no density quotient in seated areas.
  • Density quotient of 1 per 2sqm in other areas and non-seated venues.
  • Venues with capacity over 500 must publish COVIDSafe Plan.
  • Events are subject to the Public Events Framework. 

Tours and Transport

  • Open with COVIDSafe requirements.

 If you suspect you may have COVID-19 or require more guidance call the dedicated hotline – open 24 hours, 7 days 1800 675 398

 

 

Government Support Available

LOCAL

City of Greater Geelong council has released a financial hardship policy supporting their existing business support package. This policy gives businesses and residents who pay rates, rent, fees and/or charges to the City the ability to defer payments for a mutually agreed period and create payment plans to suit individual circumstances. Read more about all the policy updates here.

The Business Support Package includes a program of expert professional advice in human resources, financial management and digital marketing, as well as business mentoring for operators within the region via Geelong Business Support. If you need help navigating these options, the Geelong business concierge service is available to help on 5272 5272. This Taking Care of Business fact sheet outlines the support that is available and to who. 

Golden Plains Shire has announced a range of Business Support measures to help businesses within the region.
Find out more details, and apply for any relevant packages here.

STATE

The Victorian Government has further extended the Business Support Fund, with a range of support initiatives aimed at the industries most impacted by the extended lockdown. Many of these programs are finalising details, and applications will be open soon.

Payroll tax relief extended:
An extension of the payroll tax relief for the remainder of the 2020/21 financial year for businesses with payrolls of up to $10 million.
In addition, a further $137 million worth of tax relief packages will include waiving and deferring charges like liquor licensing fees, the congestion levy and increases to the landfill levy. 
 
Grants available to businesses with payrolls up to $10 million. Allocations will be based on the following:
  • companies with a payroll of less than $650,000 will be eligible to receive a $10,000 grant;
  • companies with a payroll between $650,000 and $3 million, a grant of $15,000 will be made available; and
  • companies with a payroll between $3 million and $10 million will be eligible for a grant of $20,000.

Licensed venues in the hospitality sector:

The $251 million Licensed Venue Fund will deliver grants of between $10,000 and $30,000. Levels of funding in Regional Victoria will be allocated as follows

  • venues with licenses allowing 1-20 patrons will be eligible for grants of $10,000;
  • venues with patron caps of between 21 and 100 are eligible for $15,000
  • venues with patron caps of greater than 100 have access to grants of $25,000.

Outdoor Eating and Entertainment Package: 

A $290 million package was released today that will focus on outdoor dining and entertainment, including specific support for sole traders in the tourism industry.
The $87.5 million Outdoor Eating and Entertainment Package includes direct business support as well as opportunities for local government to access funds that will help them facilitate hospitality in outdoor environments.

More detail will be available soon on the Business Victoria website (and we’ll let our members know as soon as it is announced).

Looking for forms or application requirements? The Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry has compiled a range of official paperwork for download – relating to Jobkeeper, redundancy, working from home and updated awards. They’re also waiving fees for new members (some major savings)!

FEDERAL

The Australian Government has announced an Economic Response to the coronavirus. Information on financial assistance, eligibility and timing for the new government support can be found on business.gov.au or via the hotline on 13 22 15.

There is also financial support for businesses from the Australian Taxation Office (ATO), and can be found here. 

The JobKeeper program has now officially ended.

    official announcements

    Your one stop shop for all the latest announcements and advice from Government and official bodies.

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    Useful Links

    Official Announcements

    BEACON’S SILVER SERVICE: 25 YEARS OF EMPLOYMENT

    This week, the team at BIG4 Beacon Resort celebrated Lisa Shapter’s silver anniversary, congratulating her on an incredible 25 years of employment. Lisa’s remarkable forward vision and her commitment and loyalty to the holiday park have seen her grow from a...

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    Australia’s airlines, hotels and caravan parks, restaurants and bars, travel agents and tourism operators are set for a rush of nearly 800,000 tourists as part of a new $1.2 billion support package from the Morrison-McCormack Government. Prime Minister Scott Morrison...

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