Mackay Regional Council commits to Small Business Friendly Councils initiative

Published: 10 Mar 2021

Small businesses in the Mackay region will receive added support from a new Small Business Friendly Councils (SBFC) commitment made by Mackay Regional Council today.

Queensland Small Business Commissioner, Maree Adshead co-signed the SBFC Charter with Mackay Regional Council Mayor Greg Williamson and Mackay Region Chamber of Commerce member Madeleine Connors.

“This is vote of confidence for small businesses in the Mackay region and I am excited to see the positive effects this initiative will bring to the small businesses within the local community.” Ms Adshead said.

“Small businesses are still trying to recover from the impacts of COVID-19; we hope council’s commitment to this initiative will help remind the local community to go local and support small businesses in their ongoing recovery.” she said.

Mayor Williamson said small businesses are the backbone of the Mackay economy.

“Small business is a cornerstone of the region’s economy and community, making up more than 96.9 per cent of the region's businesses.”

"Joining the Small Business Friendly Councils initiative reinforces the importance and relevance of the many activities and programs that council has already implemented to support small business." he said.

"This commitment to buying local is having a positive impact on small businesses in financial terms. This financial year, council has already spent over $67 million on goods and services within the Mackay region which makes up over 60 per cent of all council procurement."

Mackay Region Chamber of Commerce member Madeleine Connors said, “We are very happy to see the introduction of the small business friendly council initiative for our region. The charter will enable less red tape and a continued focus on buying local from the Mackay Regional council, which we are always advocates for as a Chamber of Commerce.”

Minister for Employment and Small Business Di Farmer said small businesses are the heart of the economy, and the heart of our communities.

“That’s why, together with the Small Business Commissioner, we are travelling the state to hear from small businesses about what we can do to help support and grow your business.

“Whether it’s buying local or reducing red tape, we need to work together to support our small businesses and the Small Business Friendly Councils initiative is great way to progress this.” Ms Farmer said.

Over the past few months, the Queensland Small Business Commissioner has been working with the Local Government Association of Queensland (LGAQ), councils such as Mackay and Chambers of Commerce across Queensland in the development of localised charters to help small businesses.

“Small businesses are at the heart of Queensland communities; they make an essential contribution to the Queensland economy and are part of our social fabric.” Ms Adshead said.

“This is a commitment by Mackay Regional Council and its partners to be mindful of small businesses, their issues and priorities when making decisions for the local community.” she said.

The SBFC charter has been developed in conjunction with councils and is flexible to their local needs. It includes a commitment to:

  • communicate and engage
  • raise small businesses profile and capability
  • support resilience and recovery
  • simplify administration and regulation (red tape reduction)
  • ensure fair procurement and prompt payment terms
  • promote place-based activities.

“I have spoken with many councils who are eager to embrace this initiative and hope as we build momentum, we can amplify the support for small businesses across Queensland.” Ms Adshead said.

Look out for the small business friendly identifier to recognise those council’s participating in the initiative.