More charities now eligible for Covid-19 wage subsidy – downturn threshold reduced to 15%

Last night the Government signalled a key change to the JobKeeper wage subsidy, as it applies to non-profit orgs.

The wage subsidy was introduced last week to help those employers experiencing economic downturn as a result of Covid-19, to retain staff through the crisis. The subsidy provides $1,500 per employee*, per fortnight for up to 6 months.

Initially, non-profit orgs were only eligible for the subsidy if they were experiencing a decline in revenue of 30%**

The eligibility threshold has now been reduced to a 15% decline in revenue due to COVID-19, for all charities registered with the ACNC.

The Government’s announcement comes following representations made by charities and peak industry bodies about the need for initial measures to be tweaked. The changes recognise the essential role played by NFP’s and the increased demand for their services during the pandemic. The legislation will be introduced to Parliament this Wednesday, 8 April.

Some important details on the calculations remain unclear…

We await key details on how the assessment of reduced revenues will be framed. There are so many ways to measure a drop in revenue….is it to the same period last year? Or is it to what was budgeted? Or to revenue several months prior? Can you qualify based on a future expected drop, rather than something that has been experienced so far? Can you pick and mix and make your case?

We just don’t know the answers at this point. The legislation is set to pass on Wednesday and following that, we expect to see more fact sheets, as well as the application questions. With that information, the assessments can be made.

For clients that are not in a clear-cut position (i.e. a revenue drop of 15% due to COVID-19) but where a 15% drop may be provable, or at least worth assessing, please be assured we will support you with this.

Register your interest

Remember – if you want to participate in the JobKeeper scheme, you must register your interest with the ATO. Doing so now will ensure that you get the relevant updates about the next stage of the application process.

More information is available on the Treasury website.

*Some exclusions apply, including casual staff employed for less than one year, and certain visa holders.

**Our news items assume our reading audience comprises orgs with less than $1 billion revenue. There are of course different rules for orgs above $1 billion revenue.

2020-04-08T05:40:37+00:00 April 6th, 2020|NFP sector|