Qld rules out means-testing COVID fines

·2-min read

The Queensland government says there's no practical way to means test coronavirus fines for the rich, after the executive director of a listed video tech company sailed from Sydney to the Gold Coast on a super yacht.

Jeromy Young founded ASX-listed Atomos and until recently was its CEO. He still holds the position of executive director.

Last week he and three others boarded the 34.5-metre super yacht Dreamtime, which costs $15,000 to charter overnight, and sailed from Sydney to Southport in defiance of Queensland's ban on arrivals from Sydney.

The group then went to the Wallabies versus France rugby international in Brisbane.

Mr Young and the three others on the vessel have since copped individual fines worth $4100. But social media users have chimed in, pointing out a fine of that size is small change for the wealthy.

Deputy Premier Steven Miles says there's not much he can do to ensure financial penalties correlate to people's bank balances.

"I don't think there is a way to means test penalties, which is what you'd need to be able to do to make the penalty an appropriate deterrent in those circumstances," he told reporters on Wednesday.

He said $4,000 was still a pretty big fine "for most of us".

"Certainly that would be a deterrent for me," Mr Miles said.

"And you've also got to remember, these people are now going to have to spend two weeks in hotel quarantine and as much as we try to make hotel quarantine as comfortable as possible, it's certainly nothing like sitting on a super yacht."

There have been no positive coronavirus tests associated with the super yacht.

It's understood Mr Young may appear on the Seven Network program Sunrise on Thursday.

Atomos has issued a statement saying Mr Young stepped down as CEO in February and his trip to Queensland was "a personal matter".

The ASX website still lists Mr Young as an executive director of the company.

"Atomos fully supports appropriate measures to maintain COVID-19 safety," the company posted on its Facebook page.

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