THE ACT government has been forced to suspend its ChooseCBR scheme after experiencing technical issues since its launch on Wednesday.
In an email sent to subscribers of the scheme this afternoon, the “ChooseCBR team” said that in light of these technical issues “we have made the difficult decision to take the site offline until 7am on Friday, June 11, to address the issues and ensure reliability.”
“This is being communicated to all businesses and customers,” the email read.
“Taking the site down will allow us to fully resolve these issues and prevent further frustrations for businesses and customers.
“We know this news is incredibly disappointing. We appreciate you continuing to treat your local businesses and their staff with respect and kindness. We acknowledge that as a result of these issues some businesses will have paused their participation in the program and we understand that decision.”
The ChooseCBR team apologised for the inconvenience and said they look forward to being able to continue to deliver digital vouchers to Canberrans once these issues have been fully resolved.
Shadow business minister Leanne Castley was quick to criticise the scheme this afternoon, saying: “So much for the government’s much hyped improvements.”
Despite the ACT government saying it had improved the program, Canberrans have been unable to get through to the website and businesses unable to process the vouchers, she said.
“Multiple businesses are now no longer accepting the vouchers because the system is unreliable and causing too much stress,” she said.
“It is simply not fair and unacceptable for business owners, staff and customers to be put in this position.
“This is the second attempt at launching the ChooseCBR program and on both occasions there have been significant problems.
“The ChooseCBR trial was a flop with only 336 businesses signing up yet a staggering $123,000 wasted on admin costs.
“Now I fear the ChooseCBR program is going the same way. If this program does not help small business, it is a $2 million waste of money.”