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Morena, I trust that those of you outside of Auckland were able to enjoy a somewhat more relaxed weekend.  As we await this afternoon's announcement about Auckland's alert level status, I wanted to update you on a few key points.


SECOND RESURGENCE PAYMENT ANNOUNCED

It was a welcome relief to hear the Finance Minister announce a second round of the resurgence payment on Friday afternoon.  This is much needed for businesses both inside and outside of Auckland.

You will need to show a 30% or more drop in revenue in a 7-day period from 8 September until immediately before all of NZ returns to Alert Level 1 compared to a typical 7-day period in the 6 weeks before 17 August.The payment is the same at $1,500 per business plus $400 per FTE up to 50 FTEs - a maximum payment of $21,500. 

Applications will open for the second payment at 8am on Friday 17 September through your MyIR portal on ird.govt.nz

Note - the eligibility criteria was adjusted so that you only have to have been in business at least one month prior to 17 August 2021 to claim the payment.

Applications will remain open for both payments until 1 month after all of NZ returns to Level 1.

 


CROSSING THE BORDERS

Regular testing is now required for those crossing the border. Additional information was released at 7 pm on Friday night and is summarised below:
 

  • From11.59 pm on Thursday 16 September workers will need ID, proof of travel and proof of test to cross the border.
  • Workers and employers will need to work together to understand what they are required to do and how they will comply.
  • Worker need to be tested every 7 days, but do not need to stand down while awaiting the test result.
  • There will be dedicated sites near the boundaries for workers to get tested and they should receive either a text confirmation or a paper confirmation.
  • Employers need to ensure that their workers understand their obligation to get tested and should verify that they are getting tested.
  • You can use existing testing stations, large employers may be able to organise on-site testing, and saliva tests will also be made available.  Click here to find out about the saliva testing option.
  • From 17 September, police will begin compliance checking for testing. Those that can't show evidence of surveillance testing won't  be fined, but they will be refused entry across the border.  Both the employer and employee will need to have an understanding of what this means with regard to wages if your employee is unable to come to work because they have not complied.
  •  

LOBBYING FOR PRINTERS AT LEVEL 4

Substantial effort has been put in over the last 10 days trying to get an exemption for businesses within the Level 4 boundaries to be able to supply/print for their customers outside of the boundaries, regardless of whether they are essential services.  A compromise was proposed that printers already providing essential services could expand that to non-essential customers provided they didn't increase their Level 4 staffing numbers. This would mean no additional movement of people and present no increased risk.  

Unfortunately the Prime Minister has rejected this to date which is incredibly frustrating, however it remains on the table with officials if Level 4 is extended this afternoon.  There is no guarantee that it will be approved even then but we will continue to push this point once we know what is happening later today.

You may have heard last week an exemption was granted to parts of the building industry to re-open to provide building materials to other parts of the country.  As an indication of how tough they are being, they were provided a 4-hour window to apply, and approval was limited to a total of 100 workers across the whole of Level 4.


WAGE SUBSIDY #2

Applications for the second wage subsidy opened on 3 September and close this Thursday, 16 September, at 11.59 pm.  This is not just for businesses in Auckland, but right across the country if the restrictions at Level 3/Level 2 mean you meet the 40% revenue decline criteria.  Click here to start an application.


LEAVE SUPPORT PAYMENT/SHORT TERM ABSENCE PAYMENT
Just a reminder for those of you not eligible for the wage subsidy - if you have staff that are required to isolate because of potential exposure to Covid, or those awaiting a Covid test result you can apply for the Leave Support Payment or the Short Term Absence Payment.


Fingers and toes crossed for some good news this afternoon, but I suspect it ,ay be a little premature

Take care and let us know if there is anything we can do to help.

 


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