News and Updates

COVID-19 Industry Update: Alert levels, Mandatory record keeping, snapshot survey results

27 August 2021

Alert Level 3 south of Auckland from 11:59pm Tuesday 31 August

Auckland & Northland likely to remain at Alert Level 4 for further two weeks. 

Guidelines for events at Alert Level 2

While events and gatherings are not permitted at alert levels 3 & 4, many will be reviewing contingencies to deliver events in an Alert Level 2 environment when the time comes. Please refer to the official guidance on the COVID-19 website

However, we are seeking clarification from MBIE and DPMC (Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet) on the following two critical points for the events industry:

  • Do event attendees need to 'travel with their alert levels'? The current guidelines state "At Alert Level 2, you can travel to other regions that are at Alert Level 1 or 2 to attend a concert, conference, sports game or any other public event. If the event is in an Alert Level 2 region, the 100 person limit applies."
    There seems to be a shift in this information since the February outbreak indicating that event attendees from an AL2 area travelling to an event in an AL1 area do not bring their AL2 restrictions with them anymore (i.e. social distancing, separate groups of 100, mask wearing, etc). We are seeking clarification if this is case. 

  • Mandatory record keeping at events. Last weekend the Government announced that those responsible for events will need to ensure people keep a record when they visit, either by scanning QR codes with the COVID-19 Tracer App or making a manual record. Along with other industry associations, we are seeking to understand how the government foresees this obligation being implemented - with the most pressing questions for now being: 

    - Which kinds of events will this effect? Concerts and conferences are mentioned, but does this also include free public/non-ticketed events in outdoor venues, for instance?

    - How will this be enforced? What is the legislation that gives event owners authority to require mandatory record keeping? Who bears the liability if contact tracing fails?

    - How long will records need to be kept?

    - Have we now moved away from the New Zealand Event Sector Voluntary Code (or 'COVID Code') which includes terminology such as “encouraged” in relation to record keeping, or will this be updated as a tool for the sector to reflect the now mandated record keeping.

We will keep you updated on responses as soon as we hear back from DPMC. In the meantime, please don't hesitate to email us any questions or concerns that you may have.

Snapshot survey results

Thanks to the almost 100 respondents to our short online survey to gauge the impact of this latest lockdown on the events industry.

Respondents stated (as at survey close, 24 August):

  • 182 events had been cancelled and a further 231 events have been postponed.
  • 42%% of respondents said that cancelling or postponing these events had a considerable financial impact on their organisation, a further 36% of respondents reported a moderate financial impact.
  • In total, among the 100 respondents, an estimated the financial impact of close to $6million has been incurred, noting that responses were not received from many large events known to have cancelled around the country so this figure will be very conservative.

This snapshot is a 'lite' version of our Industry Impact Surveys carried out in previous lockdowns and we're aware of many larger cancelled events not captured here. However, the results already show the significant impacts of the rise in alert levels - these impacts will only continue to rise the longer we remain in and elevated Alert Level situation.

Financial support

The Wage Subsidy Scheme is available nationally when there's a regional or national move to Alert Levels 3 and 4 for a period of seven days and helps eligible businesses keep paying staff and protect jobs. The Wage Subsidy Scheme allows eligible employers anywhere in the country to apply for support if they expect a loss of 40 per cent of revenue. Businesses will be eligible for $600 per week per full-time equivalent employee, and $359 per week per part-time employee. Find out more on the link below:
https://covid19.govt.nz/business-and-money/financial-support/financial-support-for-businesses/

The Resurgence Support Payment (RSP) is a payment to help support viable and ongoing businesses or organisations due to a COVID-19 alert level increase to level 2 or higher. If your business or organisation is facing a reduction in revenue due to an alert level increase, you may be eligible for the RSP. Find out more on the link below: https://www.ird.govt.nz/covid-19/business-and-organisations/resurgence-support-paymen

Regional Events Fund (REF) reminder
Have you applied? Don't put it in the too hard basket - get in touch with your local IMA to discuss your event's eligibility. 
https://www.mbie.govt.nz/immigration-and-tourism/tourism/tourism-recovery/regional-events-fund/

Wellness, wellbeing and resilience tips

The Mental Health Foundation have created a COVID-19 Workplace Wellbeing Resource that may assist managing stress among staff.

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