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The Government has extended the employee support subsidy for quake-affected businesses inWellington and Hurunui District, Economic Development Minister Simon Bridges and Social Development Minister Anne Tolley have announced.

“While Wellington is mostly open for business, a small number of employers are still unable to open their doors and we’re still seeing new applications come in,” Mr Bridges says.

“An extension of the support package will provide assurance to those businesses which have been prevented from operating and will be unable to do so for some time. It will also provide certainty over the coming holiday period.”

“Some businesses are able to operate from vacant premises nearby or operate from other branches in the same chain. This package is specifically for businesses who physically cannot move their fittings and can’t operate,” Mrs Tolley says.

The support subsidy will be at the same rate. It will be extended for a further eight weeks to 5 March at a rate of:

  • $500 gross per week for a full time employee ($4,000 per person);
  • $300 gross per week for a part time employee ($2,400 per person);
  • It will not be subject to GST (i.e. so employees get a higher net subsidy); and it will apply only for the period from when the company is prevented from operating i.e. until the cordon is lifted.

The support is in line with the package provided to Kaikoura businesses.
“Up to $17.5 million has been set aside for the total business support package.

Joint Ministers will review the scheme as the end date nears and further funds may be made available if required,” Mr Bridges says.

Anyone requiring information and support should call the Government Helpline on 0800 779 997. More information is available at http://www.msd.govt.nz/emergency/

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