The Shadow Treasurer and Shadow Minister for Small Business Dr Steve Thomas says that whilst he again welcomes the Premier’s announcement of changes to his too little, too late and too hard business support packages, the changes are again too small to have a big impact.
“Today’s announcement that he will shorten the qualification period by two weeks is another acknowledgement that his original package was too hard to use, as I have been repeatedly saying,” Dr Thomas said.
“It’s Mark McGowan once again having to admit that he got it wrong.”
Dr Thomas said that the small improvement made today still masks a massive problem with the packages the Premier has drip fed out to the business community over the last few weeks.
“The original package required a 30% or 50% reduction of turnover from last year, when many businesses were already barely breaking even,” Dr Thomas said.
“The Premier has today said an alternative period can be used if the business did not operate this time last year or that this timeframe provides an inaccurate representation,” Dr Thomas said.
“Once again he is offering vague and uncertain advice, when it would be so simple to provide clarity.
“To have real and proper value the comparison needs to be with 2019 or 2018, or an average of the two.
“This would be comparing lockdown turnover with a business’s pre-COVID turnover, and give a genuine level of the impact of the Government imposed restrictions.
“Once again this drip-fed minor correction that lacks clarity and certainty shows that the Premier has no understanding of the business community in Western Australia and how it operates.
“I am also outraged that the Premier has rolled out this admission on a Friday afternoon, presumably to hide his embarrassment at getting it so wrong.
“His promise of gold standard accountability has turned into lead standard concealment.
“Business needs clarity and consistency, but the rules announced by the Premier are constantly changing.”