Lifting the payroll tax threshold to $900,000 will boost business confidence and encourage greater employment in small hospitality businesses in Western Australia, said Restaurant & Catering Australia (R&CA).

R&CA CEO John Hart said the election commitment made by the Barnett government to lift the current payroll tax rate from $850,000 to $900,000 from 1 January 2018 will provide much reprieve to small businesses struggling with the cost of compliance.

“The payroll tax threshold has not kept pace with wage growth in WA. This places pressure on small business and means they limit the number of people they employ.

“In hospitality this reduces productivity and the quality of service provided to customers. We need a tax system that encourages businesses to employ more people, not pay more tax.

“I’m glad the government has listened to small business and is willing to tackle red tape. Addressing the cost of labour on weekends and public holidays are big ticket items that the industry is also seeking movement on.”

Hart said both the Liberal government and Labor Party cannot forget the importance of the tourism sector ahead of the election.

“In order to truly be a global tourism destination, we need a framework that encourages small business to open longer to meet the needs of discerning visitors. Sadly, the current workplace relations system places a significant cost burden on operators, forcing them to close or reduce staff. There is a real opportunity to affect change in this year’s election,” Hart said.


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