Member for Ripon Louise Staley has called on Daniel Andrews to release local businesses from his AFL Grand Final Eve Public Holiday stranglehold.
It follows the release of a report by the Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry on the impacts of the Andrews’ Governments Grand Final Eve public holiday.
The report found:
- 74% of businesses are shutting their doors to stem loss-making
- 61% of businesses that did stay open had worse sales than a typical Friday
- 87% of businesses said they do not support the Grand Final Eve public holiday continuing
Ms Staley said it was unfair that local businesses are being forced to lose a day’s trade to support an event over 100 kilometres away in Melbourne.
“The Grand Final weekend public holiday will cripple local businesses, it is unwanted and local traders, I can’t see any point in having it and I see no benefits for the wider Ballarat region”. Ms Staley said.
“It’s tough enough for small businesses I don’t see why Daniel Andrews wants to burden them further”.
“The AFL Grand Final attracts a lot of people to Melbourne it does not attract any extra people to Ararat, Miners Rest, Maryborough, Stawell, Donald, St Arnaud, Clunes, Creswick, Beaufort or Avoca this is another example of Daniel Andrews putting Melbourne ahead of Country Victoria”
“We don’t have a public holiday for the Melbourne Cup, why should the AFL Grand Final Eve be any different, local communities should be able to choose a public holiday that suits them best.”
Shadow Minister for Small and Medium Enterprises Neale Burgess said Daniel Andrews’ Grand Final eve public holiday is directly hurting the Victorian economy and that affects jobs.
“Three in every four businesses will shut their doors next Friday and up to $1 billion will be lost as well as thousands of part time employees will have their hours cut.” Mr Burgess said.
“Hundreds of thousands of Victorians depend on the money they receive from their part-time jobs, so if they can’t work on the Grand Final public holiday then they will be out of pocket.”