Home' Hotel Management : HM APL 2016 Contents ASSOCIATION CALLS FOR FINES FOR NON
COMPLIANT TOURISM ACCOMMODATION
The Accommodation Association of Australia (AAoA) has made a submission
to the Productivity Commission calling for fines to be applied to non-
compliant tourism accommodation.
The Productivity Commission is undertaking a public inquiry into barriers
to setting up, transferring and closing a business and identifying options for
reducing barriers where appropriate.
"The Accommodation Association's base policy position is that there
should be less regulation for businesses in our industry, not more," said
Accommodation Association of Australia CEO, Richard Munro.
"However, given that in the 2013-14 financial year, there were more than
50 million room nights occupied in Australia, the duty of care to guests who
stay in accommodation establishments is paramount. In essence, the level
of regulation in Australia's accommodation industry must strike a balance
between the safety of guests and the cost of administration and compliance.
"Companies that create a platform for residential properties to be used -
illegally - for tourism accommodation are severely compromising the safety of
guests and should be the subject of a much stronger compliance regime."
The Accommodation Association emphasised the following key points in
• The Accommodation Association supports the Productivity Commission
developing a standard, national definition for tourism accommodation which
should be that tourism accommodation is any continuous stay which is not
longer than 90 days;
• Building fire safety is a significant factor in the cost of maintaining a safe
tourism accommodation business in Australia;
• Companies which generate business by creating a platform for residential
properties to be used for short-stay tourism accommodation are displaying a
flagrant disregard for numerous regulatory requirements, including planning
laws, building fire safety, disability access, insurance and payment of taxes;
• Each regime should be funded by significant fines for non-compliance of
not less than $1 million per property; and
• Zoning arrangements by local government authorities should ensure that
traditional holiday rentals will not be adversely impacted by changes to the
regulatory regime that the Association is advocating for.
Tourism industry comes together and meets
Australian Government on backpacker tax
The CEOs of Australia's leading visitor economy organisations met
with Federal Tourism Minister Richard Colbeck in late March as part
of the Federal Government's industry consultation on the proposed
Representatives included the Accommodation Association of Australia
(AAoA), the Australian Federation of Travel Agents (AFTA), ATEC,
BECA, Restaurant and Catering, Tourism Accommodation Australia
(TAA) and the Tourism and Transport Forum (TTF).
Also in attendance were the Assistant Minister to the Deputy Prime
Minister, Keith Pitt, and the Assistant Minister for Agriculture and Water
Resources, Anne Ruston.
Industry applauds Minister Colbeck on securing this commitment from
the Federal Government to undertake this consultation process following
concerns raised by the sector about the negative impact of the backpacker tax.
Representatives of the industry continue to express strong concerns
that applying a 32.5 per cent tax to working holiday makers from the
first dollar they earn will cause a further reduction in the number of
international visitors applying for these working visas.
Working holidaymakers are a crucial source of labour for the industry
especially in regional Australia. The strong growth in the visitor economy
that has been confirmed in the latest visitor survey figures is placing
additional pressure on an industry that is already facing a significant labour
shortage projected to increase to 123,000 people by 2020.
Working holidaymakers also contribute to cultural exchange, earn
approximately $15,000 per annum and spend the majority of this when
they travel and work in Australia making a significant contribution to
regional and remote economies across the country.
We look forward to continuing this dialogue with the Minister and the
Federal Government on the need to take action on this issue in the lead
up to the Federal Budget.
The proposed backpacker tax is a major
issue for the Australian tourism industry
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