| FWCFB 3993|
|FAIR WORK COMMISSION|
Fair Work Act 2009
s.157 - FWC may vary etc. modern awards if necessary to achieve modern awards objective
Application to vary the Vehicle Repair, Services and Retail Award 2020
JUSTICE ROSS, PRESIDENT
MELBOURNE, 30 JULY 2020
Application to vary modern award to achieve the modern awards objective – Schedule I – Award flexibility during the COVID-19 Pandemic.
 On 11 May 2020 we issued a Decision 1 granting an application filed by the Victorian Automobile Chamber of Commerce (VACC) , the Motor Trade Association of South Australia Inc, the Motor Traders Association of New South Wales, the Motor Trades Association of Queensland Industrial Organisation of Employers and Ai Group to insert a new schedule, Schedule J – Award flexibility during the COVID-19 Pandemic, into the Vehicle Repair, Services and Retail Award 2020 (the Vehicle Award) (note Schedule J has been renumbered and is now Schedule I). Schedule I came into operation on 11 May 2020 and was to cease operation on 30 June 2020.
 On 30 June 2020 we issued a Decision 2 granting an application to vary Schedule I to extend the operation of some of the clauses contained in Schedule I for a limited period, until 31 July 2020. It also retained the flexibilities contained within clauses I.3 (Temporary reduction of hours) and I.4 (Annual leave), with the following limitations on their use:
(a) clause I.3 can only be used by those businesses which have already utilised it and implemented a temporary reduction in hours prior to 30 June 2020, with the existing limitations in the Schedule continuing; and
(b) existing protections in clause I.6 remain.
 This Decision concerns an application to vary the Vehicle Award (the Application) filed by the VACC, Motor Trade Association of South Australia Incorporated, Motor Traders Association of New South Wales, Motor Trades Association of Queensland Industrial Organisation of Employers and Ai Group (the applicants). The Application is supported by the ACCI and the AADA. The Application noted that the applicants have correspondence with the relevant union parties including the ACTU and there are no objections.
 The Application seeks to extend the operation of Schedule I–Award Flexibility During the COVID-19 Pandemic of the Award (as varied by PR720601) for a limited period, until 31 August 2020. This period of extension is sought because:
‘The period of the extension of Schedule I is limited to 31 August 2020. This period has been chosen with specific regard to this Industry, as the Industry sees oscillating demand for business from month to month. By way of example, June is historically a relatively busy month (arising from the end of financial year sales) whereas July is historically a quiet month. In August the sales part of the Industry starts to slowly build.
The limitation of the extension to 31 August 2020 ensures that the trends of demand specific to this Industry can be monitored and the need for the Schedule reassessed.’
 The applicants submit that there is a need for the extension of Schedule I in the Vehicle Award due to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis and that the proposed variation will assist employers in the industry to maintain a level of viability and employment retention.
 It is our provisional view, taking into account the relevant s.134 considerations, that the variation proposed is necessary to achieve the modern awards objective.
 Any submission supporting or opposing the Application and our provisional view must be filed by 10 am on 31 July 2020. Submissions should be:
• sent to email@example.com and include the matter number in the subject line; and
• filed in word format.
 If no submissions are filed opposing the Application and our provisional view we will grant the Application and vary the Vehicle Award accordingly.
 If any submissions are filed opposing the Application and our provisional views, then a hearing will take place at 2pm on 31 July 2020 by telephone.
 Any party who wishes to attend the hearing in relation to this matter should send an email to Chambers.Ross.firstname.lastname@example.org specifying a name and contact telephone number by 10am on 31 July 2020.
 In the event that no submissions are filed opposing our provisional view, then the hearing proposed for 2pm on 31 July 2020 will not be necessary.
Printed by authority of the Commonwealth Government Printer
1  FWCFB 1741.
2  FWCFB 3146.