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Liberal and Labor on today's announcements around JobKeeper

The Prime Minister has announced that JobKeeper will be extended to March 2021 with payments reduced to $1,200 a fortnight.

This will also come with a lower Jobkeeper payment of $750 per fortnight for those working less than 20 hrs a week.

From March 2021, JobKeeper will be $1000 for full-time employees and $650 for people working less than 20 hours.

The PM advises that most businesses will have to requalify for JobKeeper by demonstrating a 30 per cent loss in revenue, with the threshold 50 per cent for major companies.

Businesses will be required to complete two turnover tests with JobKeeper 2.0, one in October and one in January.

Treasury estimates the number of JobKeeper recipients will fall to 1.4 million in the December quarter and one million in the March 2021 quarter.

The COVID supplement for JobSeeker is to be reduced to $250 until the end of this year with the income free area to be increased that will allow JobSeeker recipients to earn up to $300 without it affecting any supplementary payments.

You can listen to the details in this media announcement in the video HERE

Addressing the media today in Narooma the Labor Leader, Anthony Albanese was asked by ABC South East journalist Daniel Doody, "As you know, the coronavirus supplement for the JobSeeker will be reduced to $250. Are you comfortable with that revised rate?"

The Labor leader responded "Well, this is a substantial reduction. But, of course, without legislation, it'll be reduced to zero. So, Labor will examine the detail. I'm also concerned, very concerned, that the Government appears to have not taken this opportunity to announce a permanent increase in JobSeeker, $40 a day is not enough to live on, the current Newstart rate. And to just say that once we're through this pandemic, it'll just go back to that figure is, in my view, completely unacceptable. The Government's acknowledged, by having to introduce a supplement, that the old Newstart rate of $40 a day wasn't enough. We need to make sure that people have enough income to have the essentials of life available to them."

When asked if the JobKeeper 2.0 timeframe was adequate as announced as being in place until March next year Mr Albanese was quite clear saying "Well, we will wait and see how the Government responds. Our concern is that the economy was flat before the pandemic. The economy was seeing a doubling of the debt, wage stagnation, we were seeing productivity going backwards, and we saw people really struggling. "At the same time, some of the design of the programs simply has been badly designed. The fact that there were 850,000 Australians getting more money at the same time as so many low-income Australians were getting nothing at all. Casual employees, people on visas, a whole lot of people relying upon charity to get by. It shouldn't be the circumstances whereby a single mum trying to raise a couple of kids in a circumstance whereby they had some casual employment in order to get by simply missed out on support, as a result of the way that the Government designed JobKeeper.

"So, we will certainly be examining all of the detail of the proposals that the Government is putting forward. We also are concerned that the Government doesn't have a plan for economic recovery. And in energy policy and infrastructure, in so many areas, they essentially today are just having more of what was already in place but at a lower rate, without having any vision for how we're going to create jobs, how we are going to aspire during this economic recovery to actually produce a better Australia. The Federal Labor leader said "Some of our weaknesses as a nation have been exposed during this crisis. The fact that we don't manufacture things here. We need to have industry policy that will create jobs. We need infrastructure investment that will create jobs. And we need to take up that opportunity during this crisis." Drawn to comment on the announcement that businesses will be required to complete two turnover tests with JobKeeper 2.0, one in October and one in January Mr Albanese replied: "Well, it is reasonable the idea that you need to monitor whether businesses remain eligible for JobKeeper in terms of the reduction in their income. It is there to supplement businesses that are struggling as a result of the pandemic. We'll wait and see what the detail of that is. It shouldn't be too onerous in terms of some of the bureaucracy shouldn't be created so that people aren't able to get support. "And certainly, one of the things that we've seen, for example, with their small business proposal, in terms of the interest, the $40 billion that was allocated for loans for businesses, just over $1 billion of that was taken up. Overwhelmingly, it hasn't been taken up. And then the Government has announced an increase in that amount. Well, they should get it right in the first place before they talk about further increases. "So, we'll wait and see the design of the scheme. We will examine in great detail. I know this Government doesn't like scrutiny. But we will ensure that occurs. And the COVID-19 Committee of the Senate, chaired by Senator Katy Gallagher, will be having special hearings to go through some of this detail so that there can be some transparency there. Because we don't want the same mistakes that have been made up to this point to just continue to be repeated, which means that people miss out and others simply don't get the opportunity to go forward", he concluded.

Above: Amid the flurry of the press call at Narooma today this local watched on

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