Collie businesses will have the opportunity to open their doors for longer this summer as the Shire of Collie council approve the trading hours extension recommendation.
From December 5 until Christmas the extended hours recommend businesses open between the hours of 7am – 9pm Monday to Friday.
On Saturdays they aim for businesses to open between the hours of 7am – 6pm and Sundays from 8am – 6pm.
Similar hours were proposed in the lead up to New Years and into 2019.
Each year the minister for commerce approves the retail trading hours over Christmas and New Year periods.
The extended hours are only a guideline for when businesses should open and close and are not compulsory.
In recent years, after consultation with the chamber, the shire has generally applied for extended trading hours over Christmas, but this year they have been extended more than previous years.
At Tuesday night’s meeting councillor Jodie Hanns said the hours the chamber proposed were a proactive approach, especially in the lead up to Christmas and the holidays with people coming to camp nearby, shops will be open and people will be able to shop locally whether it’s locals or people out of town.
Councillor Michelle Smith was against the recommendation and said the extended trading hours were for the bigger businesses in Collie, like Coles and Woolworths and not for smaller businesses.
She said Boxing Day trading hours should not be from 8am – 6pm and recommended instead they change to 11am – 4. So people that travel away for Christmas can get to work on time and people can have more time to spend with their families over the holiday period.
Councillor Gary Fairies said the hours were only a guideline and it would still be up to each business as to what they do with their staff.
Collie Canvas and Camping World owner Kaylene Evans said businesses should have an opportunity to open for extended hours.
“I have opened Boxing Day and the day after for the last couple of years and with the people that come into town camping it’s definitely something that’s needed,” she said.
“A 8am start is probably too early but I think the 11am we’ve had previously is too late. I think a 9 or 10am start for Boxing Day would be a more preferable time.”