Financial Assistance COVID-19 Stimulus Measures

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Council at its meetings on 15 April 2020, 20 May 2020, 17 June, 16 September 2020, 9 December 2020 and 17 March 2021 considered and adopted Mayoral Minutes to provide a range of financial assistance and stimulus measures to assist local businesses and the Bathurst community in response to the COVID 19 pandemic.

The six Mayoral Minutes can be access in the Document Library.

The following are some of the measures to be considered by Council:

  • Council will waive a range of fees or charges for local businesses such as: Cafes and restaurants, hairdressers and skin businesses, bed and breakfasts & temporary food outlets
  • Changes to the current procurement policy will also be considered to provide greater opportunities for local businesses and suppliers.
  • Set the interest rate that accrues on rates and charges that become due and payable at 0% for the period 1 June 2020 to 31 December 2020. Thereafter, the interest rate will be set at the rate specified for the time being by the Minister.
  • Provide $18,000 to the Bathurst Business Chamber to assist it in achieving its objectives within the business community.
  • Continue with its annual media usage profile with the Western Advocate and Bathurst City Life for the period to 30 June 2021.
  • Set the price for water sold (at Council’s standpipes) at an amount of $2.50 per kilolitre for the period 1 July 2020 to 31 December 2020.
  • Repayments on some community loans be deferred for the year 2020/21 and that interest charges for 2020/21 be waived.
  • Waive Community Group Licence fees for 2020/2021 for some community and sporting groups.
  • Waive Library Fines from 1 July to 31 December 2020.
  • Hardship claims for rates will be considered on a case by case basis
  • Provide the Bathurst District Sport and Recreation Council (BDS&RC) with $10,000 to assist affiliated sporting bodies to cover costs incurred due to COVID-19
  • Provide Arts OutWest with $10,000 to be utilised in assisting the organisation to achieve its mission.

Council has also allocated additional funds to projects to assist in the recovery phase including support for the

  • DoorsOpen marketing campaign
  • Jobs Expo
  • Biz Month
  • A business attraction program
  • Upstairs Start Up Hub
  • Expansion of the Buy Local gift card program
  • Tourism marketing campaign


Council at its meetings on 15 April 2020, 20 May 2020, 17 June, 16 September 2020, 9 December 2020 and 17 March 2021 considered and adopted Mayoral Minutes to provide a range of financial assistance and stimulus measures to assist local businesses and the Bathurst community in response to the COVID 19 pandemic.

The six Mayoral Minutes can be access in the Document Library.

The following are some of the measures to be considered by Council:

  • Council will waive a range of fees or charges for local businesses such as: Cafes and restaurants, hairdressers and skin businesses, bed and breakfasts & temporary food outlets
  • Changes to the current procurement policy will also be considered to provide greater opportunities for local businesses and suppliers.
  • Set the interest rate that accrues on rates and charges that become due and payable at 0% for the period 1 June 2020 to 31 December 2020. Thereafter, the interest rate will be set at the rate specified for the time being by the Minister.
  • Provide $18,000 to the Bathurst Business Chamber to assist it in achieving its objectives within the business community.
  • Continue with its annual media usage profile with the Western Advocate and Bathurst City Life for the period to 30 June 2021.
  • Set the price for water sold (at Council’s standpipes) at an amount of $2.50 per kilolitre for the period 1 July 2020 to 31 December 2020.
  • Repayments on some community loans be deferred for the year 2020/21 and that interest charges for 2020/21 be waived.
  • Waive Community Group Licence fees for 2020/2021 for some community and sporting groups.
  • Waive Library Fines from 1 July to 31 December 2020.
  • Hardship claims for rates will be considered on a case by case basis
  • Provide the Bathurst District Sport and Recreation Council (BDS&RC) with $10,000 to assist affiliated sporting bodies to cover costs incurred due to COVID-19
  • Provide Arts OutWest with $10,000 to be utilised in assisting the organisation to achieve its mission.

Council has also allocated additional funds to projects to assist in the recovery phase including support for the

  • DoorsOpen marketing campaign
  • Jobs Expo
  • Biz Month
  • A business attraction program
  • Upstairs Start Up Hub
  • Expansion of the Buy Local gift card program
  • Tourism marketing campaign


  • Council to consider fifth round of stimulus measures

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    MEDIA RELEASE 9 December 2020

    Council will consider a mayoral minute on a range of stimulus measures and support for the community as part of the organisation's COVID response at tonight's meeting.

    The first round of economic stimulus measures was passed by Council in April, a second round in May, a third in June and a fourth was passed in September.

    Mayor Bobby Bourke said it was important to continue to support our community well into the recovery period.

    “Council will continue supporting community organisations with this fifth round of measures that are aimed to sustain and rebuild our economy. The total value of the stimulus measures to date is $754,527” he said.

    Following are some of the measures to be considered by Council:


    • Waive $17,000 in Bathurst Memorial Entertainment Centre hire fees for the 2021 Carillon Theatrical Society performance.
    • Waive user fees – Outdoor Dining Fees (General Fund 0440) from 1 January 2021 to 30 June 2021 estimated cost of $9,244.
    • Waive Bathurst Library fines for the period 1 January 2021 to 30 June 2021 estimated cost of $5,233.

    Previous stimulus measures include ongoing assistance to businesses and the business chamber, residents, sporting and community groups. The financial impact to Council as a result of the COVID 19 pandemic is estimated at $4,487,259 million although savings have been identified in the budget to help fund the losses.

    The Mayoral Minute is available on Council’s website as part of tonight’s business paper.

  • Council to consider fourth round of stimulus measures

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    MEDIA RELEASE

    16 September 2020

    Council will consider a fourth round of stimulus measures to support the community, as part of a Mayoral Minute, at tonight’s Council meeting.

    The first round of economic stimulus measures was passed by Council in April, a second round in May and a third was passed in June.

    Mayor Bobby Bourke said Council is committed to supporting our community through these uncertain times.

    “Council will continue working with businesses, artists, sporting groups and other community organisations to support them with this third round of measures that are aimed to sustain and rebuild our economy. The total value of the stimulus measures to date is $722, 070,” he said.

    Following are some of the measures to be considered by Council:

    • Waive the user fees of parks, gardens and active spaces for summer sporting groups
    • Provide the Bathurst District Sport and Recreational Council (BDS&RC) with $10,000 to assist affiliated sporting bodies to cover costs incurred due to COVID-19.
    • Provide Arts OutWest with $10,000 to be utilised in assisting the organisation to achieve its mission.

    Previous stimulus measures include ongoing assistance to businesses and the business chamber, residents, sporting and community groups. The financial impact to Council as a result of the COVID 19 pandemic is estimated at $4.1 million although savings have been identified in the budget to help fund the losses.

    The Mayoral Minute is available in the Document Library.

  • Council to consider additional stimulus measures

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    MEDIA RELEASE

    20 May 2020

    Council will tonight consider additional stimulus measures to further support local businesses and the community, as part of a Mayoral Minute.

    The first round of economic stimulus measures was passed by Council in April which were aimed to help sustain and build the local economy.

    Mayor Bobby Bourke said this was the next step to support and bolster local businesses and the community during these unprecedented times.

    Council plays an important role in sustaining and driving our local economy, and these are another range of measures that will help rebuild and grow our region into the future,” he said.

    The following are some of the measures to be considered by Council:

    • Set the interest rate that accrues on rates and charges that become due and payable at 0% for the period 1 June 2020 to 31 December 2020. Thereafter, the interest rate will be set at the rate specified for the time being by the Minister.
    • Provide $18,000 to the Bathurst Business Chamber to assist it in achieving its objectives within the business community.
    • Continue with its annual media usage profile with the Western Advocate and Bathurst City Life for the period to 30 June 2021.
    • Set the price for water sold (at Council’s standpipes) at an amount of $2.50 per kilolitre for the period 1 July 2020 to 31 December 2020.
    • Repayments on some community loans be deferred for the year 2020/21 and that interest charges for 2020/21 be waived.
    • Waive Community Group Licence fees for 2020/2021 for some community and sporting groups.
    • Waive Library Fines from 1 July to 31 December 2020.
  • Council to consider stimulus measures for businesses and community

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    MEDIA RELEASE

    15 April 2020

    Council will tonight consider a range of stimulus measures to assist local businesses and the community intended to help sustain and rebuild the local economy, as part of a Mayoral Minute.

    Mayor Bobby Bourke said this is an unprecedented health emergency and Council plays an important role in sustaining and driving our local economy.

    “Council will do all we can to support our residents, businesses and preserve the very fabric of our community”, he said.

    The following measures will be considered:

    Assistance to businesses

    Council is proposing to waive a range of fees or charges for local businesses such as:

    • Cafes and restaurants
    • Hairdressers and skin businesses
    • Bed and breakfasts
    • Temporary food outlets

    Changes to the current procurement policy will also be considered to provide greater opportunities for local businesses and suppliers.

    Hardship claims for rates

    Cases of hardship as a result COVID-19 will be considered on an individual case by case basis. Council will work with ratepayers and businesses to establish repayment plans this may include consideration of the waiving, or deferring, of interest penalties for the short term.

    Retention of Council services and staff

    Council is ensuring the provision of vital services to the community, in particular, water, sewer, waste, finance (creditors), health and building, planning, engineering and childcare, and where able to do so, the provision of services by alternative methods such as library, art gallery and museum services.

    Council is a major contributor to the economy employing around 400 staff members and will be a major driver of the local economy during the recovery phase. It is important that Council staff are employed and continue to spend their income in the local economy to support businesses in keeping their doors open. It is anticipated that Federal and State programs will be announced in the future will provide opportunities for local government.

    At this stage, Council has predicted a loss of revenue of approximately $465 000 and the initial stimulus measures that are proposed will cost $410 000 with an impact on Council’s budget of almost $900K. This figure is expected to rise significantly as the crisis continues.

    Recovery Phase

    Council is planning towards the economic and community recovery period by continuing to build on services that are provided to the community.

    A strategy is being developed to assist businesses when the economy enters a period of recovery. An array of shop local marketing materials and campaigns will be prepared for roll out at the appropriate time. The recovery period will include, but is not limited to, an expanded Jobs Expo to assist with employment, expanded BizMonth program, extensive promotion of the Buy Local Gift Card (including competitions and associated messaging), and a revamped Business Leaders Lunch.

    Current initiatives include:

    • Revamp of the Bathurst Business Hub website to provide businesses with easier access to the latest State and Federal Government announcements, stimulus packages and resources
    • Extensive update of the Evojobs platform
    • Regular eNewsletters to Council’s business database
    • Buy Local Gift Card competition
    • Promotion of a series of online webinars for business owners