Public holidays trading gets Council’s support

Trading hours

Howard Salkow

Senior Journalist

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Public holiday trading is a major factor in Douglas Shire's appeal to tourists. Image: Karlie Brady
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Douglas Shire Council has come out in support of the Douglas Chamber of Commerce’s request for a further 5-10-year moratorium to allow local businesses to trade on all public holidays.

And Mayor Michael Kerr said we also support their submission to extend that to all of Douglas Shire.

“A tourist visiting on a public holiday still expects to be able to shop and fully enjoy their holiday.

“Our region has been significantly impacted by COVID-related border closures and anything that improves the trading environment for local businesses will help our economy recover,” said Kerr.

This comes in the wake of the Education, Employment and Training Committee inquiring into the operation of the Trading (Allowable Hours) Act 1990. The Act sets the days and times retailers across Queensland are allowed to open including on Sundays and public holidays.

A public hearing is being held on Saturday, 20 November 2021 from 3:00pm – 4:00pm at the Mossman Memorial Bowls Club 6-8 Johnston Road, Mossman. This is when the case for Port Douglas and Mossman will be made.

On 14 September 2021, the Legislative Assembly agreed to a motion that the Education, Employment and Training Committee inquire into and report on the operation of the Trading (Allowable Hours) Act 1990 (the Inquiry). The committee is required to report to the Legislative Assembly by Monday 31 January 2022.

The terms of reference for the Inquiry are that the committee inquire into and report on the operation of the Trading (Allowable Hours) Act 1990 (the Act), in particular:

1. To consider the impact of amendments made by theTrading (Allowable Hours) Amendment Act 2017, with particular regard to:

a) examining the impact of the moratorium on trading hours orders and restriction on making applications (section 59 of the Act) and recommendations following its expiry;
b) examining the impact of the moratorium applicable to shops in Mossman and Port Douglas Tourist Area (section 56 of the Act) and recommendations following its expiry;
c) examination of applications made, and consequences, for relaxation of provisions under section 5 of the Act and recommendations for improvement;
d) the effectiveness of prescribing permitted hours in legislation;
e) the suitability of the permitted hours as currently prescribed; and
f) the role of the Queensland Industrial Relations Commission in setting permitted hours outside the prescribed hours.

2. The operation and performance of the provisions of the Act and how, in practice, different provisions are contributing to the objects of the Act and consider the impact of the existing framework for the regulation of trading hours in Queensland.

3. The effects of trading hours regulation on the Queensland economy and on regional Queensland.
Liquor trading hours, penalty rates for retail employees working on public holidays and Sundays, and the dates public holidays are held on, are outside of the operation of the Trading (Allowable Hours) Act 1990 and therefore outside of the inquiry terms of reference.

More information can be found here: Committee Details | Queensland Parliament


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