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  • A Senate inquiry is recommending a review into the definition of 'casual workers' in the gig economy. (AAP)
From crowd-funding receiving a tick of approval, to a Senate inquiry calling for a review of casual work, here’s what’s making small business news this week.
Source:
SBS Small Business Secrets
20 Sep - 3:56 PM  UPDATED 24 Sep - 9:42 AM

Inquiry calls for casual gig worker review

A Senate inquiry has recommended the definition of ‘casual’ workers be reviewed, and the definition of ‘employee’ be broadened to include those working in the gig economy.

The report was based on over 160 submissions from participants in the union movement, academics and those in the gig economy.

The year-long inquiry found that Australia needs a review of industrial relations law, to catch up to the non-standard employment marketplace.

In their submissions, gig economy platforms pushed to continue calling their workers ‘contractors’.

Changing the definition to ‘employee’ rather than ‘contractor’ would force platforms in the gig economy, to take added responsibility for their workforce. 

ATO streamlines small business single touch payroll

Australia’s tax office (the ATO) has released a range of measures making single touch payroll (STP) reporting easier for small businesses. 

The new guidelines allow accountants and tax agents to act on behalf of small and medium businesses for STP lodgements.

The sector has welcomed the move after many small businesses reported difficulties with the system.

The new process is for businesses that don’t have any overdue activity statement lodgements or outstanding debts and are not subject to tax office compliance activity.

Businesses can now sign a single agreement with their accountant to cover 12 months’ worth of lodgements. 

Crowd-funding Gets Tick of Approval

The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman is welcoming the approval of legislation to extend crowd-funding eligibility.

The new policy lowers the cost of accessing crowd-funding platforms for proprietary companies.

The alternative source of equity has become particularly popular with start-ups.

The Ombudsman Kate Carnell says the move provides easier access to capital and will assist small businesses to operate and grow.

“The previous conversion process was costly and complicated, and put off small businesses from even considering crowdfunding,” says Ms. Carnell.

“The move allows a safer environment for everyday investors: customers, friends, family, and the general public interested in novel and exciting business ideas, and not just specialised investors”.