Lockyer Valley Mayor Steve Jones.
Lockyer Valley Mayor Steve Jones.

Sorry, the holiday is now off

WHILE some people in the Lockyer Valley will still have a day off on the anniversary of the flood, the day will no longer be a public holiday.

The anniversary has been declared a "special holiday", allowing businesses to choose if they want to open and they will not have to pay penalty rates to staff if they stay open.

Lockyer Valley mayor Steve Jones said the decision was made to assist local businesses.

"Originally it was thought the day was to be a public holiday, but with further advice from the State Government, it has now come to light that the day will be a special holiday," he said.

"Council and the State Government both referred to it as a public holiday but the terms we used were not in line with what it actually was."

Cr Jones said the State Government did not want to create further public holidays due to the stress it would place on businesses and consequently the holiday was always planned as a "special" holiday.

"The government is very reluctant to create a public holiday due to overtime and public holiday pay," he said.

"It was always intended to be at this level."

However, LNP member for Lockyer Ian Rickuss said he doubted many people would get the day off.

"The only ones who I can see who are going to get it are the local council," he said.

Mr Rickuss said the initial declaration of a public holiday was not supported by Lockyer Valley businesses.

"Council didn't consult with anyone," he said.

"Businesses who are based in the Lockyer Valley but have workers in Toowoomba and Ipswich would have to pay public holiday rates."

The holiday will only apply in the Lockyer Valley.

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