Warning on wage increase
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.