WITH a workforce of 230 staff and JobKeeper quickly coming to an end, Dubbo RSL general manager Guy Lico fears what will happen when the initiative finishes.
The RSL is among 1423 businesses in the Dubbo postcode on JobKeeper, but the wage subsidy scheme is due to end on September 30.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Wednesday that JobKeeper payments would continue in some form, but he is not due to issue details of phase two until July 23.
When coronavirus hit Mr Lico was forced to stand down his entire workforce, including himself, as the hospitality industry struggled.
"It was probably one of the hardest things I've ever done in my 34 years of management," he said.
While the club has now reopened, patronage is far from being back to pre-coronavirus days.
"People are slowly coming back and have more confidence, but there are some people who are not keen to mingle with other people just yet," Mr Lico said.
I reckon it'll take 18 months to two years before we get on our feet properly.Dubbo RSL general manager Guy Lico
"I reckon it'll take 18 months to two years before we get on our feet properly."
With the downturn in customers Mr Lico fears what will happen if JobKeeper stops for Dubbo RSL staff and other hospitality workers on September 30.
"It's been a lifesaver for us," he said.
While the RSL will survive if JobKeeper is cut, Mr Lico said it could be in a very reduced format and that will impact staff and patrons.
"It may mean less shifts, it might mean that instead of opening two bars we'll only open one, it might mean instead of opening at 10am we open at 2pm," he said.
"The majority of our workforce are casual and I worry for the ones who don't have another job."
While Mr Lico would not comment on which industries should have a JobKeeper extension, he did urge the federal government to look at each sector separately before cutting wage subsidies completely.
"There's going to be a lot of business that won't survive come the end of September," he said.