The best cities in the world are safe AND fun. Jo Haylen, Member for Summer Hill, and Darcy Byrne, former Mayor of Leichhardt, today welcomed NSW Labor's plan to save live music in Sydney.
NSW Labor will:
1. Deliver All-Night Public Transport on Weekends
Deliver better public transport on Friday and Saturday nights through a trial of late running trains, buses and light rail with ongoing analysis, review and consumer research.
2. Create a new class of liquor licence for live venues
Labor will support the creation of a new class of liquor licence for live venues across NSW. Based on the Oxford Art Factory this would allow later trading for venues across Sydney which focus on live performance. Labor wants to support live music and believes that the creation of a new form of licence is appropriate to cater for the special requirements of venues that have as their purpose and focus the provision of live entertainment.
3. Appoint a Night Time Economy Commissioner
Appoint a night-time economy commissioner to chair the round table to coordinate growth in the night-time economy across NSW. That person will work with all stakeholders, including local government, NSW Police, creative industry representatives, venue owners and others to facilitate the growth of a night time economy that is both safe and vibrant.
4. Build a Strategic Plan for Contemporary Music
Develop a Strategic Plan for Contemporary Music like those in Victoria, Tasmania and the ACT which will identify short, medium and long-term actions to support the growth of live music and other small live cultural events. Encouraging the establishment of live music in other areas of Sydney such as along the Parramatta Road and in hubs like Parramatta.
5. Establish a permanent Night Time Economy Roundtable
Establish a permanent Roundtable that meets several times a year to improve communication and consultation, to identify problems at an early stage and develop sustainable solutions. It should act like a taskforce and be equipped with a clear mandate to support live music and jobs in a night-time economy that is not blighted by crime and threats to public safety.
6. Review regulation
One of the first tasks of a permanent Night Time Economy Roundtable should be to participate in a “Better Regulation and Red Tape Review” of the sector. We have been receiving reports that the sector is being held back by poorly designed and implemented regulation and a fundamental review is required to streamline the system and rules that apply. For example, the management of noise complaints around music venues can involve local councils, the Environmental Protection Authority and Liquor and Gaming NSW. A single regulatory authority will make the rules, and their enforcement, clearer for everyone.
7. Support small bars
Labor continues to support small bars and will review the approval process, which was designed to be efficient and predictable, to ensure that it is working as it should. Applicants should not be faced with costly and unnecessary delays. Labor will also bring the definition of small bars into line with that operates in Adelaide, meaning that their capacity will increase from 60 persons to 120 persons.
Comments attributable to Jo Haylen MP, Member for Summer Hill:
"Mike Baird doesn't understand what the lock-out laws have done to Sydney's live music scene. We've lost venues, jobs and many of the things we love about Sydney.
"Labor's plan is about recognising that live music and creative industries are at the heart of Sydney and that we need to be proactive about supporting them, including a new class of liquor license.
"Labor will also trial 24-hour transport on weekends.
"We know can have a safe city, but a fun city too."
Comments attributable to Darcy Byrne, elected Mayor of Leichhardt:
"Musicians and music lovers have been warning that as venues shut their doors across Sydney the next generation of artists are being left without any spaces get a start in the industry," Darcy Byrne said.
"Creating a new category of licensed live music venues can give the sector a shot in the arm and lead to the proliferation a new kind of venue in the inner west and across metropolitan Sydney.
"Because people consume alcohol differently when it's combined with cultural activity, live music venues can be the antidote to the the plague of beer barn violence."