The South Eastern Times : July 10th 2018
4 NEWS Let market decide opening hours: Libs MILLICENT’S regulated large stores would be able to open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year under the Liberal State Government’s proposed shop trading hour law. Treasurer Rob Lucas introduced the deregulation bill to parliament last week in a bid to reform the state’s “archaic, confusing and stifling” stop trading laws. The new Retail Trading Bill, which will repeal and replace the existing laws under the Shop Trading Hours Act, will see Millicent’s trading restrictions completely abolished. Under the proposed law, Woolworths, Foster’s Foodland, IGA Millicent and Target Country will be allowed to trade on Christmas Day, Good Friday and Anzac Day morning. Metropolitan Adelaide will be bound by an employee-based calculation system to allow large stores to open on every day of the year, with restrictions on Christmas Day, Good Friday and Anzac Day morning for stores with more than 20 staff working at the time. Mr Lucas said the bill did not mandate when shops can and cannot open, but left the decision of when to operate with store owners. “Our bill is based on the simple premise - and long-stated position - that if traders want to open, if consumers want to shop and if workers are willing and able to work then the law should not prevent them,” he said. “There are so many games that are being played under the current laws in relation in trying to get just under the magic numbers of 400 square metres or 200 square metres so that you get better access to trading hours. “Those traders who have been trading on public holidays when they should not have been will be allowed to trade. “These dog’s breakfast laws have penalised hardworking traders for far too long and all we’re saying is, if shops want to open, consumers want to shop and workers are prepared to work, then they should be allowed to.” Ahead of the state election, the Liberal Party sought to introduce amendments to the existing law to allow Millicent’s three exempt stores to trade from midnight to 9pm. However, Mr Lucas said during the drafting process it became apparent restrictions around which stores were able to open between 9pm and midnight was “problematic” and “created anomalies” that would have unfairly penalised some independent retailers. Mr Lucas acknowledged the challenge of gaining opposition and crossbench support for the bill, which will require at least three non-government votes to pass in the Legislative Council. He said the Liberal Party hoped to demonstrate the “unworkable” current laws in the chamber through extensive and comprehensive debate. Member for MacKillop Nick McBride, who has previously pledged to seek a party room exemption for Millicent, said he would watch the upper house debate “with interest”. “At this stage, all I can do is monitor its progress from the lower house,” he said. Shop, Distributive and Allied Employees’ Association assistant secretary Josh Peak slammed the “job-killing” trading hours legislation as a free kick for international conglomerates to be exempt from trading hour restrictions. “For the Liberals to allow international chains to open their doors 24 hours a day, including on Anzac Day and Good Friday, is disgraceful,” he said. “It will not create extra hours for workers or more local jobs, it will have the opposite effect.” Foster’s Foodland manager David Foster questioned what he described as “two different sets of rules” for regional and metropolitan retailers. “It sounds like more of a dog’s breakfast than what is currently in place,” he said. “If they said they are going to deregulate the state, why is there a condition in for the city retailers? “It does not make sense.” PARENT 2017 EDITION 721362 4 - The South Eastern Times, Tuesday, July 10, 2018 www.thesoutheasterntimes.com.au RENT talk COMMUNITY CAMPAIGN: Labor Legislative Council deputy leader Clare Scriven presents State Opposition leader Peter Malinauskas with the 1200 signatures opposing shop trading hour deregulation in Millicent. Millicent shoppers make stand From front page On Wednesday, Mr Malinauskas joined the five Legislative Council crossbenchers on the steps of Parliament House to sign a pledge of support for the state’s small business sector. SA-Best MLC Frank Pangallo reaffirmed his party’s opposition to the proposed new shop trading laws, saying the collective vote of the crossbench and the opposition would “see the legislation fail at the starting blocks”. Despite the legislation being likely to fail before it gets to the lower house, where Member for MacKillop Nick McBride sits, Ms Scriven said pressure was mounting on the first-term MP to vote against his party’s legislation. “One thing that is clear is after spending considerable time talking to residents from Millicent is they do not want shop trading hours deregulated,” she said. “What they do want is for Nick McBride to cross the floor, vote against this legislation put forward by his Liberal colleagues and stand up for his local constituents. “Nick McBride has already acknowl- edged that deregulation will lead to either Fosters Foodland or the IGA at Millicent shutting down and that’s not good enough.” Mr McBride dismissed Labor’s calls to vote against the legislation. “Ms Scriven can count and knows that my crossing the floor in the lower house will not change the outcome,” he said. “I am working to deliver the status quo for the Millicent business community and continue to negotiate in the party room.” Available now at The Border Watch, The South Eastern Times, Penola Pennant and selected local businesses.
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