By JONATHON HOWARD
NOOSA Council could soon have greater power to shutdown nuisance party houses under proposed amendments to the Sustainable Planning Act.
Changes to the legislation were proposed in State Parliament on Tuesday, 3 June, and would allow for a “party house restricted area” to be set in place by council.
Deputy Premier and Minister for State Development, Infrastructure and Planning, Jeff Seeney, said the amendment would deal with problems when residential dwellings were regularly hired, rented or leased for the purpose of hosting events.
Mr Seeney also took a shot at the previous Labor Government’s lack of planning, which, he said had paved the way for nuisance party houses.
“Their laws allowed events to cause a nuisance in the form of traffic hazards, excessive noise, offensive social behaviour, violence, littering, illegal activities and criminal activity,” he said.
“We’ve listened to community concerns and have already taken action by giving police greater power to deal with anti-social behaviour at out-of- control events.
“And now we’re giving councils the power to decide where these houses can operate in their local area.”
The changes would require existing or future houses wanting to host regular parties or events to obtain development approval from council.
Acting Mayor, Bob Abbott, who has stepped into the mayor’s role while Noel is away on holidays, said it was a positive move for the region – “but the devil will be in the detail”.
“Council is awaiting further details in relation to the party house law changes,” he said.
Mr Abbott said several houses had been identified as breaching the party house laws, including one residential address that had consistently hosted weddings.
Member for Noosa, Glen Elmes, said he was pleased that councils now had the power to regulate the operations of party houses.
“They come in where they are not wanted and compete most unfairly with legitimate holiday accommodation providers who do the right thing,” Mr Elmes said.
“This is a win for local neighbourhoods and their quality life.
“The new council powers honour an election promise I made to help target the problem in Noosa of large homes being converted into mass rentals.
“It has been issue of great concern to residents unfortunate enough to live adjacent to one.”
Mr Elmes said he would be happy to give Noosa Council all the support it needed to see the new legislation applied once it was passed through parliament.