The Shadow Treasurer and Shadow Minister for Small Business, the Hon Dr Steve Thomas MLC, says that the Premier’s media conference on Friday, in which he revealed the new plan for the State’s transition and the date that it will happen, once again revealed his ignorance of or contempt for the WA business community.

The Premier said in his media conference last week said that “we’ve announced some public health social measures for Monday, so they kick in at 6am on Monday morning and they will be as I said, pretty mild restrictions, we’re going to work up what compensation we need to provide, particularly for some of the retail and other outlets out there and that’s something we’re working on as we speak.”

“Once again the compensation required for business is an ad-hoc arrangement that is yet to be developed despite the rules already being applied” Dr Thomas said. “And once again the business community will have to wait for weeks or months after the restrictions hit to even find out if they qualify.

“Business needs advance notice of the rules, especially when they keep changing those rules every week, and business needs to know in advance how they will be supported (or not).

“Surely with a hundred and fifty thousand public servants the Government should be capable of writing the compensation plan at the same time as the new restrictions in the state’s transition plan,” said Dr Thomas.

Dr Thomas said that all businesses need certainty and consistency, because they usually plan their operations weeks in advance.

“Constantly changing the rules makes it harder for business to manage or survive, and the lack of notice or warning is damaging, especially to small businesses who have limited capacity to adapt.

“The latest changes have continued a general theme of ignorance or contempt from the McGowan Government towards business operations,” said Dr Thomas.

Dr Thomas repeated his call for the release of all of the modelling the Government has been intent on keeping secret to date, including any modelling on business impacts.

“The business community has been crying out for both certainty and consistency, neither of which the Government seems interested in providing.

“A Government with more than $15 billion in expected surpluses can afford to adequately support its business community; no jurisdiction in the country has more capacity to assist!

“At the very least the McGowan Government can trust the community with the full knowledge of what’s going on. They deserve that,” said Dr Thomas.