Local Government support must be on National Cabinet agenda

Tasmanian Labor

· Local government jobs at risk without urgent resolution

· Job Keeper package must be extended to councils

· Economic consequences of stand downs unsustainable

Today’s meeting of National Cabinet must resolve to include Local Government in the Job Keeper package.

Labor Shadow Minister for Local Government, Anita Dow, said Councils were an important employer, particularly in regional Tasmania.

“Local Government is an essential service and council employees are critical both to the immediate response and long term recovery of local economies and communities.

“Councils have been hit hard by the impacts of coronavirus through the loss of rates revenue and the closure of services including child care, aquatic centres, car parking, art galleries and museums.

“It is estimated that without Federal or State Government support up to 500 casual workers could be at risk and permanent workers face being stood down or having their hours reduced. Council’s need to be supported so that they don’t have to let staff go”

“The Federal Government must urgently step in to ensure that these workers are included in the Job Keeper package.

“The State Government must work with Local Government to ensure that there is a consistent approach and support to provide rates relief and that these measures do not come at the expense of the jobs of council employees and important community services. Where appropriate Council workers could be retrained and redeployed in areas of need in response to the coronavirus threat.

“Tasmania’s private sector economy has already taken a beating, we need to ensure that all employees across the public sector including Council workers can continue to support their local communities.”

Anita Dow MP

Minister for Local Government

/Public Release. View in full here.