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NSW Labor's New Statewide Reforms Aim To Bring Back Live Music

19 October 2023 | 11:41 am | Mary Varvaris

"The Vibrancy Reforms announced by the NSW Government herald the beginning of a new era for the night-time economy in NSW."

Body Type @ UNSW Roundhouse

Body Type @ UNSW Roundhouse (Credit: Peter Dovgan)

The New South Wales state government – run by the Labor Party’s Chris Minns – is tabling new vibrancy reform legislation in Parliament today (19 October) that will remove red tape and bring back live music to communities across the state.

The statewide vibrancy reforms will act to encourage local entertainment zones that are as vibrant and diverse as Sydney’s community. In a significant overhaul, the state government will patch up frameworks to prevent single complainants from shutting down music venues.

Pencilled in the government’s proposed changes, processes will be streamlined by making Liquor & Gaming NSW the lead in managing noise complaints against licensed venues.

Moving forward from the state’s controversial lockout laws and over-regulation, the Minns government will table streamlined licensing laws allowing venues two hours of extra trading.

The state government will look to implement the changes through six areas of reform, including:

·        Sensible venue sound management

·        Vibrant, coordinated precincts

·        An activated outdoors

·        Empowering the 24-Hour Economy Commissioner to deliver a sustainable, thriving nighttime economy

·        Licensing

·        Improving the nighttime sector for workers

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Night Time Industries Association CEO Mick Gibb commented that the organisation is pleased with the changes, commenting in a press release, “The Vibrancy Reforms announced by the NSW Government herald the beginning of a new era for the night-time economy in NSW.

“The NTIA is delighted to see the Government stick to its election commitment and make the 24-Hour Economy Commissioner’s role a statutory appointment. This is a measure that will mean there’s a champion for the nighttime economy embedded into the Government so we can avoid ever going back to the devastation of lockout laws while maintaining public safety at all times.”

Gibb added, “The night time economy regulatory landscape is a complex maze with duplication, inefficiencies and a lack of clarity. Nowhere is this more prevalent than with managing entertainment sound from licensed venues. A single regulator means venues can go on to diversify their offering without the ongoing challenges posed by a single vexatious complainant.

“The NTIA and its members look forward to engaging and consulting with Government and regulators as the reforms are implemented.”

ClubsNSW CEO Rebecca Riant is also delighted by the changes, adding in a statement, “From Dunedoo Sports Club's annual Tunes On The Turf music festival to the bowling green that Leichhardt Bowling Club has transformed into an outdoor dining and entertainment space, our industry is always looking for new ways to support local artists and businesses and keep their communities vibrant and engaged.

Riant continued, “We thank the NSW Government for including ClubsNSW in the consultation process for these reforms and for reducing some of the red tape for clubs when it comes to trading and hosting live entertainment.

“The changes announced today will make a huge difference for clubs looking to diversify their offerings, and we look forward to working with the government more closely for the betterment of our industry and the broader community.”