Q&A with Dominic Perrottet

Business NSW's first Tele-Town Hall with the NSW State Treasurer

On 30 April 2020, more than 3,000 NSW business owners called in to listen to and ask questions of The Hon. Dominic Perrottet MP regarding the State's response to the COVID-19 crisis. 

Business NSW CEO Stephen Cartwright hosted the Tele-Town Hall Q&A with the Hon. Mr Dominic Perrottet.

  • 3,000 plus callers attended the event.
  • Calls came from every region of NSW.
  • 176 questions were submitted.
  • Results of the two flash-poll questions are below


The below audio edits are the six key themes that NSW business owners wanted to discuss with the Treasurer. 


Aileen: Where I live in Guyra in the Northern Tablelands we've had very few cases of the COVID-19 and yet we face the same restrictions as Sydney.

I'm wondering if, in the unaffected regions, we can start lifting the restrictions on businesses sooner? 

Listen to the NSW Treasurer's response.

Belinda: I'm in regional NSW; I have a post office/cafe and bed & breakfast. We've had three and a half years of severe drought and just as things started getting better we had two months of bushfires.

You're offering me $10,000 if my income has reduced by 75 per cent from only last year. 

My income has reduced by 25 per cent every year for the past three years, or 75 per cent of what I should be earning so why am I entitled to nothing? I don't qualify for drought relief either. And there are hundreds and hundreds of businesses in small towns going through exactly what I am. 

Listen to the NSW Treasurer's response.

James: My topic I wanted to talk about is rent.

I've got a small business in Mooney Beach just north of Coffs Harbour.  We've had a rough trot here with bushfires in September - January, then flooding in February, then COVID in March. No Christmas no Easter trade but despite that staying open through all of it, so we're feeling the pinch missing out on that $10k as well. 

The question that I've got is, people like me are getting asked questions (by landlords) about whether we've been applying for grants and superannuations and all that stuff, even despite ASIC warning these guys that this is not the right behaviour.

Is there anything you have to say that can help guys like us? 

Listen to the NSW Treasurer's response.

Gerald: Good evening Treasurer. My name's Gerald Searle and I'm from Ballina. We have a business in Ballina and a similar one in Queensland, so we're grappling with two states with slightly different configurations. 

My main interest is 'business trading post-restrictions', and how on earth you're planning to fund the reduction in income and a lot of the costs the NSW government has experienced during this period? 

I'm keen to prepare our business for the long-term and obviously there are going to be some ways that you're likely going to want to recover some money, and that's my prime interest from now on.

Listen to the NSW Treasurer's response.

Dianna: Thank you very much for this opportunity. I think I'm going reinforce quite a few things other callers have said, especially around state grants and the difficulty in obtaining them. But my question specifically is around local government. 

I'm in Nimbin in northern NSW in the Lismore council area, we have a very close releationship with our local government. I'm really concerned about the impact on local government and their exlusion from things like Jobkeeper.

I'm wondering how the State is going to assist local governments through this crisis? 

Listen to the NSW Treasurer's response.

Terry: I'm an accountant, my biggest concern is I'm fighting for a lot of my smaller businesses who can't access any of the grants to assist them. They're having a lot of trouble funding the $750 Jobkeeper (especially for permanent casuals), they're meant to pay the $300 and fund the extra $450, and not get that money back till 6 weeks later. 

I'm wondering if there's anything the State can do to assist these people? 

Listen to the NSW Treasurer's response.


Tele-Town Hall with the NSW Treasurer - Full Audio 

Audio recording of Q&A session: more than 3,000 NSW business owners called into to listen to and ask questions of the NSW State Treasurer, Dominic Perrottet.