THE Accommodation Association is supportive of the Victorian Government support measures announced today, saying they would provide "much needed relief for hotels, motels and accommodation providers hit hard by the state’s COVID restrictions, snap shutdowns and border closures"
Accommodation Association CEO Dean Long said, “On behalf of Victoria’s hotels, motels and accommodation providers, we welcome this acknowledgment from the State Government of the devastating impact of its coronavirus circuit-breaker strategy and look forward to continuing to work closely to get the balance right in successfully managing the risk.
“Hotels and motels simply aren’t businesses that can stop and start suddenly," Mr Long said. "This most recent shutdown ahead of the Valentine Day weekend, one of the busiest times of the year, came after most dining and bar facilities and hotels had stocked up in anticipation.
"It would be great to get to the point where we had greater transparency around the decision frameworks all State and Territory Governments are using, including Victoria, so that we can appropriately plan.”
Mr Long said the Accommodation Association continued to work closely with Victoria’s Tourism Industry Council to ensure the tourism industry would receive support to offset the impact of Government-mandated closures.
The $143 million Circuit Breaker Support Package consists of:
- A new $92 million Business Costs Assistance Program with grants of $2000 for businesses in the tourism, hospitality, food wholesaling, events and selected retail industries with an annual payroll of up to $3 million;
- A $24.9 million boost to the Licensed Hospitality Venue Fund which will see previous recipients receive a one-off $3000 payment per premises;
- The $16.2 million Victorian Accommodation Support Program which recognises the hit of cancellations on regional and metropolitan accommodation providers allowing providers with 10 and under cancellations to apply for $2250 per business and those with more than 10 cancellations to apply for $4500 per business;
- A $10 million injection to expand the Regional Travel Voucher Scheme to include a new Melbourne Travel Voucher with 40,000 vouchers for $200 for travel in greater Melbourne plus an additional 10,000 vouchers in regional Victoria.
The Accommodation Association represents close to 3,500 hotels, motels and accommodation providers, over 150,000 rooms and nearly 100,000 employees across Australia (pre COVID) and over 500 operators in Victoria. Mr Long said accommodation contributed $17 billion to the Australian economy and $1.5 billion to the Victorian economy.