Warn­ing on wage in­crease

Geraldton Guardian - - News - Zoe Keenan

Up to 80 per cent of small busi­nesses in Ger­ald­ton would suf­fer if the State Gov­ern­ment’s sug­ges­tion to in­crease the min­i­mum wage goes ahead, ac­cord­ing to the Mid West Cham­ber of Com­merce and In­dus­try.

Cham­ber chief ex­ec­u­tive Glen Whistler-Carr said small busi­nesses con­tin­ued to bear the brunt of the econ­omy, with pres­sures now hurt­ing fam­i­lies.

“Small busi­nesses will only be able to ab­sorb costs which keep in­creas­ing in the very short-term,” he said.

“Prices of prod­ucts and ser­vices will need to be ad­justed if these in­creases con­tinue.”

Mr Whistler-Carr said busi­nesses had copped in­creases in freight and com­pli­ance costs and would be ques­tion­ing the fea­si­bil­ity of con­tin­u­ing prof­itable busi­nesses with a min­i­mum wage in­crease.

“The econ­omy is quite se­lec­tive, while it is as­sist­ing pro­gres­sion in some busi­nesses, re­tail is still go­ing through one of the hard­est times in the Aus­tralian eco­nomic cy­cle,” he said. “Re­tail would be hit hard by an in­crease in the min­i­mum wage be­cause they’re the ones gen­er­ally em­ploy­ing on min­i­mum wages.”

New busi­nesses open

Two new busi­nesses have opened in Ger­ald­ton’s tourist and hos­pi­tal­ity scene in Jan­uary — the lon­gawaited Ger­ald Apart­ment Ho­tel and new Har­bourView Restau­rant.

The ho­tel in Cathe­dral Ave, once known as Town Tow­ers, opened on Jan­uary 22.

The busi­ness in­cludes ser­viced apart­ments, suites, restau­rants, bars, a con­fer­ence cen­tre and meet­ing rooms. The ho­tel’s rooftop bar, The Old Man and the Sea, is ex­pected to be opened in April af­ter de­lays caused by miss­ing struc­tural plans.

Perched on the top floor of Cham­pion House, Marine Ter­race, the new restau­rant Har­bourView opened on Jan­uary 27.

The premises with a 270 de­gree view of Cham­pion Bay has been oc­cu­pied by var­i­ous restu­ar­ants in the past, in­clud­ing Fid­dlers, Tides, Mon­te­gos and most re­cently Portview Restau­rant. Har­bourView of­fers mod­ern Aus­tralian cui­sine.

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