Cash grant to shops will not be extended

The COVID-19 cash support scheme the City of Ryde has offered to businesses in Eastwood will not be extended to other shopping areas.

Deputy Mayor Dr Peter Kim (ALP) backed by Clr Roy Maggio and the Liberal councillors have been pushing for an extension of the $2,000 per shop scheme which was introduced to help small businesses in Eastwood after the shopping area suffered a social media scare campaign when the coronavirus first hit Sydney earlier this year.
Councillors voted by six votes to five on Tuesday night to support an amended motion by Labor’s Clr Bernard Purcell to wait for a business report, note the success of the council’s support for small business and highlight the importance of the council’s commitment to social housing.
The Deputy Mayor said all shops across the City of Ryde should benefit from the council’s show of good faith.
“A lot of shops have closed down and a lot will not survive after Jobkeeper ends,” he said.
Councillor Purcell takes a different view and puts his faith in the Council’s Shop Local initiative.
“I’m hearing business wants support, not handouts, they want stimulus,” he said.
Labor also councillors stress the importance of affordable housing because it means renters will have more money to spend locally.
Councillor Roy Maggio (Ind) is sceptical.
“This is not about supporting affordable housing, it is about taking immediate action to put business on track,” he said.
“We are playing politics by the Labor councillors and I’m sick of it.”
For Liberal Clr Trenton Brown, the Purcell amendment is also political.
“You Labor lefties are so completely out of touch, you just don’t get it,” he said.
“You are so wrapped up in your Labor cocoon and what will it take you to treat all businesses the same when we (Liberals) get voted down by the Socialist Six on this council every time.”
Two Eastwood supermarkets were linked to COVID-19 cases earlier this month.