Hon Simon O'Brien MLC

Hon Simon O'Brien MLC

Former Minister for Finance; Commerce; Small Business

    Support for drought affected rural businesses

    18/11/2011 12:00 AM
    • $350,000 support package for rural and regional businesses
    • Building resilience against future dry season

    The State Government today announced the launch of a $350,000 business resilience support package for rural and regional businesses in Western Australia.


    Small Business Minister Simon O’Brien said the primary objective of the 2011 Small Business Grant Scheme was to encourage business owners to build resilience in their non-farm, regional businesses, and to build stronger rural communities.


    “The scheme is designed to help rural and regional communities move from a crisis management approach to one of risk management, and be better prepared for future challenges,” Mr O’Brien said.


    “This drought reform package follows on from the very successful Small Business Dry Seasons Assistance program of 2010-11, which saw more than $500,000 allocated to more than 330 business owners across 100 drought affected shires.”


    Although many of the affected shires have since received rain, the dry season impact on local businesses is yet to be alleviated.


    “Often, small businesses are as vulnerable to climatic conditions as their farmer and primary producer customers, so it’s important for them to have sound business practices to withstand fluctuations in their trade,” the Minister said.


    “The $350,000, administered by the Small Business Development Corporation, will be used by businesses that are supplying substantial goods or services to one or more of the areas within the designated region.”


    The grant provides a subsidy of up to $1,500 to help eligible small businesses cover the cost of a professional service provider (accountant, financial planner, legal practitioner or management consultant). 


    These contracted services will identify areas of the business that can be improved, and develop strategies that will increase the resilience of the business and its capacity to withstand the impact of future dry seasons.


          Fact File

    Minister's office - 9213 6400