Hardship fund for Albert Street businesses to be established
The Government and Auckland Council have brought forward work on establishing a hardship fund for businesses in Auckland’s Albert Street to recognise the difficulty some have faced because of the delay in City Rail Link construction.
Transport Minister Phil Twyford said, “I can confirm that the Government has approved in principle a hardship fund set up to make ex-gratia payments for Albert Street businesses that meet certain eligibility criteria.
“Hardship grants will only be paid to businesses negatively affected by the delay in construction and the businesses will need to open their books to demonstrate they were commercially viable before the works started.
“I have also asked the Ministry of Transport to investigate options for business support in relation to other public transport projects, so that clear support and criteria is known from now on at the beginning of future projects,” Phil Twyford said.
Mayor Phil Goff said, “I am pleased that the Government has agreed to our proposal to set up a capped fund targeted at those facing exceptional hardship. For those small business owners and their families this will be an enormous relief.
“The fund will be administered by CRLL and funded out of its existing contingency, so no extra funding is required,” he said.
CRLL will now finalise eligibility criteria and continue to work with Albert Street businesses.