In Welfare Services

South Australia  Shadow Minister for Small Business and WorkCover Iain Evans

WorkCover Kicks Small Business In The Guts Again

Victor P Taffa

South Australia Shadow Minister for Small Business and WorkCover Iain Evans is very concerned that South Australian small businesses have to put up with the worst workers’ compensation scheme in Australia and will now be getting another kick in the guts from WorkCover, through the abolition of the ‘bonus/penalty scheme’.

WorkCover have announced the abolition of the ‘bonus/penalty scheme’ from July this year but have not announced what will replace it if anything.

What will the impact be on small businesses with the death of the ‘bonus/penalty scheme’?

Mr. Iain Evans believes that increased costs will be the impact on small business.


The ‘bonus/penalty scheme’ allows small businesses to get a discount on the WorkCover Levy for good occupational health and safety performance. For example, one small business benefits to the tune of over a $30,000 p.a. in savings.

The abolition of the ‘bonus/penalty scheme’ will see that the cost to that small business will rise by $30,000 p.a. Thousands of other small businesses will face a similar story of increased costs.

“This Government is tired and out of touch with business.” Mr. Evans said.

“Why has the Government allowed WorkCover to abolish the ‘bonus/penalty scheme’ and push up the cost to businesses?”

Businesses in South Australia are already paying the highest levy rate of any State.

WorkCover has the worst return to work rate in Australia and the unfunded liability has peaked at $1.3 Billion.

“Small businesses are already struggling under the highest taxing Government in Australia and now WorkCover gives them another kick in the guts.” Mr. Evans said.

The Liberal Party will maintain the ‘bonus/penalty scheme’ and will include the scheme in the review of WorkCover required under the Act in 2011.

Labor Government’s consistently cutback on workers compensation schemes in a bid to save money for new office fit outs and overseas junkets.

The New South Wales Labor Government has cutback Fire Brigade entitlements and worker protections from WorkCover schemes over many years.


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