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Minimum wage increase surprises

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The Accommodation Association of Australia (AAoA) says it’s surprised by the size of the increase to the modern award minimum wage.

“The 3 per cent increase in modern award minimum wages is higher than the accommodation industry was expecting,” says Accommodation Association of Australia CEO, Richard Munro.

“Although the Fair Work Commission has indicated that legislation should change to allow parties to seek relief from the impacts of the increase where adverse circumstances affect an employer, sector or particular geographical area, the increase is too high for our industry to cope with.

“The negative impact of the increase will be felt most acutely by operators of regional tourism accommodation businesses.

“Such small businesses face hardship because they will not be able to pay for the increase in wages – the largest expense for these businesses – by raising room-rates by a similar amount.

“Even though the Commission stated the increase was moderated because of the superannuation guarantee rate increase (to 9.5 per cent from 1 July 2014), the quantum of it is too high.

“In some cases, it could result in accommodation businesses in regional areas closing.

“On behalf of the industry, the Accommodation Association will advocate to the Federal Government for change, as suggested by the Fair Work Commission, which would provide support for accommodation businesses,” Munro says.

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