A deal struck between Business SA and the SDA proposes an increase in public holidays to create extended shopping hours in the city. The deal involves the proposed introduction of two half-day public holidays, one on Christmas Eve and the other on New Years Eve.
A collection of city-focused organisations, including the Maras Group, Adelaide City Council and the Rundle Mall Management Authority, has joined forces to support the deal. Calling themselves the “Progress SA Coalition”, they argue the move would lead to a more vibrant city.
Premier Jay Weatherill has also recently committed his State Labor Government to support the deal, the Fair Work reforms having left State Parliaments with the power to regulate public holidays.
In response, the “SA Business Coalition” has formed to oppose additional public holidays. The group, which includes the Australian Hotels Association and Clubs SA, has sent an open letter to the Premier voicing its concerns, principally the cost for business of the additional public holidays.
A Bill to implement the deal has recently been put before State Parliament, which is a national first. No other Australian State or Territory has introduced public holidays on either Christmas Eve or New Years Eve. Consequently, they will be watching what happens here with interest, and the issue is sure to be seen as an early test for our new Premier.
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