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‘Absurd’ Bill should be thrown out

2 August 2006

‘Absurd’ Bill should be thrown out

A Bill that would make it impossible for cleaning and catering contractors to control their costs should be thrown out of Parliament, says Business NZ.

The Employment Relations Amendment Bill would impose restrictions where a cleaning or catering contract is terminated and goes to another contractor - the new contractor would be required to take on the existing workers at their existing pay rates.

“This is an unworkable piece of red tape that would have absurd consequences,” said Business NZ Chief Executive Phil O’Reilly.

“Imagine, for example, a cleaning firm ‘A’ that is about to lose its contract to another cleaning firm ‘B’.

“Under this proposed legislation there is nothing to stop cleaning firm ‘A’ from doubling the wages of its staff just before it loses the contract - thereby passing on hugely increased wage costs to firm ‘B’.

“There would hardly be any point in tendering for a contract - the proposed legislation would turn the tendering process into a farce.

“Business NZ has furnished numerous examples of the silly consequences of this Bill, but the Bill has returned almost unchanged from the Transport and Industrial Relations Select Committee.

“Parliament’s credibility will be undermined if this absurd Bill is allowed to progress much further,” Mr O’Reilly said.


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