MEDIA RELEASE - Barilaro fails small businesses on jobs incentive
The Deputy Premier and Minister for Skills, Regional Development and Small Business John Barilaro has failed to deliver for small businesses trying to employ more people, particularly in regional areas.
Shadow Minister for Small Business Jenny Aitchison said Mr Barilaro has not done enough to ensure the Government properly targeted assistance to small businesses under the Jobs Action Plan particularly in regional areas.
When the extension of the Jobs Action Plan was debated in Parliament last year Ms Aitchison warned the Government that small businesses found the program unreasonably arduous to claim, with reports of audits taking up to four months. Since then, Ms Aitchison has heard reports from accountants of costs of up to $7,000 to claim a $6,000 grant.
Figures released by the Opposition yesterday show that more than $258 million was paid out to some of the state’s largest companies, revealing the government’s failures to assist small businesses. Interestingly, when questioned about the proportion of grants by Ms Aitchison in August 2016, the Minister for Finances, Services and Property said that the data was not collected by the Office of State Revenue.
Regional small businesses are also missing out with less than 25 per cent of grants to small businesses under the Jobs Action Plan coming from metropolitan areas, according to data from the Minister for Finance, Property and Services earlier this year. Even more disturbingly, regional small businesses received just over 20 per cent of funding.
Jobs Action Plan Grants Number of Transactions Transactions % Funding for Grants Awarded Funding %
Metro Total 111,030 76.69% $299,416,870 79.85%
Regional Total 33,742 23.31% $75,542,011 20.15%
Totals 144,772 $374,958,881
Quotes for Shadow Minister for Small Business Jenny Aitchison
“Everywhere I go around the state from Broken Hill to Orange, from the Hunter to the Monaro, small businesses consistently tell me the Government has failed them on job creation.
“Why should large corporations in metro areas employing over 370,000 staff get $13 million of tax payer funds when small businesses in regional areas are doing it tough.
“What business person would take a $6,000 grant when it could tie them up in audits for four months and give them a bill for $7,000 from their accountant?
“The Deputy Premier has clearly failed small business in this state, particularly in the regions. He should be standing up to the Treasurer and the Minister for Finances, Services and Property to ensure that small businesses get their fair share of assistance from the Liberal National Government, particularly in regional areas.”
Quotes for Shadow Minister for Regional Development David Harris
“The Baird-Barilaro Sydney-centric government has once again demonstrated contempt for Regional NSW.
“Recent data demonstrates that Regional NSW is flirting with recession and few full time jobs are being created.
“Labor warned that the dismantling of Region specific funding programs would allow city companies to plunder the money.”
3555 Question on Notice by Ms Jenny Aitchison MP re Jobs Action Plan
(Attached spreadsheet shows regional and metro breakdown)
3339 Question on Notice by Ms Jenny Aitchison MP re Small Business Employee Incentive Scheme
Speech on the extension of the Jobs Action Plan by Ms Jenny Aitchison MP
Speech on the introduction of the Small Business Employee Incentive Scheme by Ms Jenny Aitchison MP