Business support fuels Willoughby’s economic recovery

Last modified on 16 October 2020

Outdoor dining

Willoughby City Council’s provided $2.3 million in fee and rental relief to businesses, community and sporting groups since March, with another $545,000 earmarked for additional business support. 

Approved at the Council meeting on Monday night (12 October), the extended Business Support Plan waives all footway dining and street advertising fees, saving businesses $57,000. The plan also extends the 50% fee reduction for the Chatswood Mall Market stall holders, saving stallholders $98,000.

Council will provide an estimated $390,000 to its tenants in additional rent relief, depending on their circumstances. Council is also paying its suppliers earlier to help small businesses with cash flow - moving payment terms from 30 days to 14 days or less.

Mayor Gail Giles-Gidney said feedback from the initial Business Support Plan, approved in March at an extraordinary council meeting, was well received. 

“This extension of the Business Support Plan aims to fuel economic recovery and give our local businesses the boost they need to get back on their feet,” Mayor Giles-Gidney said. 

Since March, Council’s has provided:

  • 7 tenants of Council owned premises received $583,000 in rent relief under the Business Support Plan and another 12 tenants received $740,000 in council rent relief as required under the state government COVID regulations.
  • 42 sporting club and community groups had $501,000 of their fees for sports grounds and facilities refunded or not charged
  • Around 400 businesses had their environmental health inspection fees waived, saving businesses $114,000     
  • All footway dining and advertising fees were waived, benefiting 63 food and beverage outlet, valued at $114,000
  • 38 Chatswood Mall Market stallholders received a 50% discount on stall fees, valued at $196,000.
  • Discretionary infringement - compliance officers used their discretion for infringements that did not impact on health and safety (eg parking)

Who’s eligible for the extended Business Support Plan?

Rent relief: Small businesses and not for profits leasing council-owned premises – Businesses that believe they comply for assistance under the state government legislation will need to formally apply in writing to Council. Email us with details of your request at, and use the subject ‘Rent Business Support’.

Fee concessions: Any business who normally pays a fee to council for footway dining and advertising. Charging has stopped. 

Fee concessions: Any stall holder in Chatswood Mall Market - 50% reduction in fees.