By PHILIP CHANDLER
Queenstown employers are facing another impediment to taking on migrant staff — or,
what migrant staff they can find.
It relates to delays these staff face in getting a bank appointment to get a bank account set
up, which they need before they can obtain an IRD number.
These delays can be up to four weeks.
‘‘We’ve been in touch with our bank to try and resolve something for our staff, but it seems to be a wider problem,’’ Novotel hotelier Jim Moore says.
‘‘We’re trying to make it easy for migrant staff, rather than hard, and this seems to be just
another fly in the ointment.’’
The problem, he explains, is if these staff start work without an IRD number, they get taxed at the non-declared rate of about 46%.
They’d be able to claim that back at the end of the year, but only getting paid 54% of your
wages hardly makes it easy to live, Moore says.
‘‘At the moment, the banks allow people to apply online, which is fine, but they then need
to go into a branch to actually verify a document.
‘‘And it seems all of the banks are struggling to give those staff an appointment time anywhere in the near future.’’
Compounding matters, ‘‘all the staff are desperate, so they’re actually going to every bank and making an appointment’’.
‘‘Which means every bank’s got a waiting list, and they’re not talking together to actually
try to resolve that.’’