Member for Morwell Russell Northe and Shadow Minister for Small and Medium Enterprises, Neale Burgess met with local businesses across the Morwell electorate today to discuss the impact of the Government’s AFL Grand Final Parade public holiday.
Mr Northe said local businesses were being forced to again endure the damaging impact of the Andrews Labor Government decision to declare a public holiday prior to the AFL Grand Final (30 September, 2016).
“At a time when jobs are becoming even more difficult to find and when many local businesses are already doing it tough, these added holidays result in employees losing shifts because employers are forced to close their doors,” Mr Northe said.
“If last year is anything to go by, most of our local towns and communities will be extremely quiet as the majority of businesses will simply not open their doors on what is historically one of the biggest retail days of the year.”
Victoria now has 13 public holidays, the highest of any state or territory.
Last year the Andrews Government’s own assessment of its Grand Final Parade Public Holiday, carried out by Price Waterhouse Coopers, found it would cost Victoria as much as $898 million per year.
Shadow Minister for Small and Medium Enterprises, Neale Burgess said the assessment also confirmed that the additional holidays negatively impacted local councils, aged care, and hospitals, with services being cut or organisations being saddled with unfunded wages bills.
“Research conducted by the Australian Industry Group into the impact of the first Grand Final Parade Public Holiday found it imposed a large cost on Victoria, with regional businesses and communities particularly hard-hit,” Mr Burgess said.
“I acknowledge some businesses in the tourism and hospitality sector will benefit from a potential increase in trade due to the public holiday, but the large majority of businesses will suffer.
“Daniel Andrews must listen to our small businesses and reverse this job destroying decision.”
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