In seven days, the Government intends to move the Country into the traffic light system, but Grant Robertson is still refusing to reveal the details on how Business Financial Support will work, says National’s Shadow Treasurer Andrew Bayly.
When asked today about some of the vague definitions he has revealed, he refused to give straight answers. Will revenue reduction still be a criteria for support? Don’t know. Will all types of businesses be eligible for support? Don’t know. Will your businesses be operating in Red or Orange level next weekend? Don’t know.
Every business in New Zealand right now has no idea whether they will be eligible for support in seven days’ time. What’s appalling is that this policy was announced over a month ago now, and the Minister of Finance is leaving it to the last moment to give out details. He can’t seem to get the point that businesses need time to plan and make financial decisions. They need to know how much cash they will have on hand when it comes to pay their taxes.
A Bill yesterday was passed under Urgency to grant the power to give out the COVID-19 Support Payment, however, there was exactly zero detail about how the payment will work.
It also had some concerning aspects, such as requiring the Commissioner of Inland Revenue to determine the eligibility criteria for the payment, an inherently political decision for an inherently non-political person. It also had some wording that allows the payment to not go to just businesses, but potentially any individual person.
The Government has rammed through this legislation so that they can make it to their promised deadline. It also shows clearly that they are making it up as they go. If they already had the details of the policy, they would have surely told the country already so that businesses can prepare for the change in eight days. Businesses need the certainty now.
This Government has become well known for not delivering and for making up policy as they go along, and there is no sign that this is changing any time soon.
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