6 March 2021
It seems that while JobKeeeper did help employees, some businesses did not actually need it, but got it anyway. Now it is ‘moral issue’ that they give it back- that is to say it is voluntary. If they have already taken it as executive bonuses or shareholder dividends it is probably not refundable.
The welfare recipients who had spent money and were accused retrospectively of Robodebt could not repay it either, but were hounded till the end. All that will happen to the big end of town is a few days of newspaper articles.
It is surely a reasonable principle that if taxpayers’ money is given away there should be monitoring of where it goes. If it was too hard to set up a monitoring system quickly, the obvious solution would be to make a regulation that it had to be used for purpose and would be checked and there would be prosecutions if it were misused. This would have allowed follow up, a few prosecutions and majority compliance. This government seems incapable of any sensible management of anything, unless you think that deliberately handing money to mates is an unwritten policy.
Now even small businesses are annoyed.