The health, safety and wellbeing of Tasmanians is our number one priority as we face the challenge of coronavirus. Our second stimulus package will help Tasmanian households and individuals as we deal with the ongoing impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Supporting Households and Individuals
Fees and charges relief
For households and individuals the Government will:
- Freeze the Community Fire Levy, which is part of rates collections, from the next financial year.
- Waive or refund school levies for this year at a cost of $13 million this calendar year. For those who have already paid their schools levies, the Government will arrange for these to be refunded.
- Cap electricity prices and freeze water bills for next financial year, at an estimated combined cost of $20 million. This is in addition to hardship funds and arrangements currently in place.
The Government welcomes news that:
- Aurora Energy has established a $5 million fund to assist customers with bill relief, waiving fees or charges, freezing debt, payment plans, in addition to a range of other support measures
- Aurora Energy has also advised it will not be disconnecting any residential or small business customers, without their agreement during this crisis.
Additional money for health
The Government has increased its primary health care fund from $2 million to $5 million to ensure that the sector can continue to deliver primary healthcare services during the COVID-19 pandemic. This will assist GPs, pharmacists and dentists to obtain the necessary supplies and take the necessary measures to protect themselves and our wider community in coming months.
The Government has also made an additional provision of $150 million for health to manage COVID-19.
Rent relief for social housing
The Government will not increase rent for social housing tenants, and will not count Federal and State Government emergency payments as income for the purposes of calculating rent contributions.
This will leave more money in the hands of low income households who need it in these difficult times, and in local economies at a cost of around $6.7 million.
See more on rent relief for social housing.
Additional housing for Tasmanians
The Government will also increase funding to the Private Rental Incentive Scheme to increase the pool of available houses by up to 200 this year, at a cost of $2 million for 75 additional homes. This will assist in meeting the needs of those on the housing register.
The Government will do its part to help our workforce by providing casual workers in the state sector with two weeks special leave if they are required to self-isolate.
No Interest Loan Scheme (NILS)
The Government will provide an extra $1 million to increase the provisions of NILS to support low-income families obtain affordable finance for goods and services.
Emergency accommodation and support is available for low-income Tasmanians who are required to self-isolate due to COVID-19 but who are unable to stay at their regular place of residence or are homeless.