$10k business grants snapped up in five days
THERE'S been just one extra case of COVID-19 recorded in Queensland overnight, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk says.
Ms Palaszczuk said the case, in Cairns, wasn't new and authorities were not particularly concerned by it.
Sunday, 24 May – coronavirus cases in Queensland:— Annastacia Palaszczuk (@AnnastaciaMP) May 24, 2020
• 1 new confirmed case
• 14 active cases
• 1,061 total confirmed cases
• 173,864 tests conducted
Sadly, six Queenslanders have died from coronavirus. 1,041 patients have recovered.#COVID19 pic.twitter.com/KEgrnNErAb
It comes as the Premier announced small businesses who haven't yet applied for special grants of up to $10,000 have missed out, with the $100 million program used up in just five days.
The disappointing news for small businesses owners who have yet to apply came as the Premier called on the federal government to spend its $70 billion JobKeeper saving on building new state infrastructure, or by expanding the program to other industries.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the small business grants, announced and opened last Monday, had been "oversubscribed" by Friday evening.
She said her government would consider additional assistance for small business in light of the speedy take-up.
"So my government is urgently looking at further assistance we can provide to those small business operators across Queensland," Ms Palaszczuk said.
"It just goes to show you that there are a lot of people out there hurting and we need to help and pitch in wherever we can."
The money had been available for businesses that employ between one and 20 employees and could have been used for anything from paying bills, to buying new equipment or changing their business to respond to COVID, like expanding to online sales.
Meanwhile, she called on Prime Minister Scott Morrison to repurpose $70 billion from the JobKeeper program following a slashing of the estimated cost of the program from $130 billion to $70 billion due to an administration error.
"There's still some industries that have missed out on that JobKeeper funding," she said when asked what should happen to that money now.
"But also too we would be happy to utilise any additional funding for major infrastructure projects across Queensland."