Vic Grand Final holiday still on cards

Victorians will get their public holiday the day before the AFL grand final.

The October 2 holiday has not yet been proclaimed in the Government Gazette, leading to confusion among businesses about whether it will delivered this year.

“There will be grand final Friday and it will be a fantastic day for families, a great day for footy and a great day for regional tourism,” Premier Daniel Andrews told reporters on Monday.

The Australian Industry Group has released a survey showing three quarters of local businesses will not open their doors on Football Friday.

Almost 80 per cent of manufacturers told AIG they would close that day, and 72 per cent of services and construction businesses said they would do the same.

“There should be no doubt Football Friday is bad news for the state and its businesses,” AIG Victoria director Tim Piper said.

But Mr Andrews said businesses were opposing public holidays because they wanted to oppose penalty rates.

“There are some people who don’t like any holidays and they don’t like any penalty rates, and if that’s their view they ought to have the courage to come out and say it,” he said.

Industrial Relations Minister Natalie Hutchins said the Football Friday proposal had been through the public consultation process, but she could not confirm when it would be gazetted.

“If employers and businesses decide to shut down on that day, well, then their work force will enjoy the benefits of the public holiday,” she told reporters.

“If they decide to stay open then they pay the penalty rates.”

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