The Brag Media
News October 27, 2015

Victorian Government confirms new laws governing live music

After The Music Network tipped it exclusively last week in its Industry Insider newsletter, the Victorian Government confirmed it is tabling new laws governing live music this week.

The changes come as part of the Live Music Action Agenda, and were announced by Minister for Planning Matthew Guy, Minister for Liquor and Gaming Regulation Edward O’Donohue, and Minister for Environment and Climate Change Ryan Smith.

Legislation will be introduced to the Parliament to require the Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor to consider the Agent of Change principle when dealing with noise complaints.

Minister Matthew Guy pointed out, “New residential developments built near existing live music venues will be responsible for noise mitigation features as part of the planning process. This means beloved pubs and clubs that are home to live music in Victoria will not be forced to close due to noise complaints from those in new apartment buildings or new houses next door.  New music venues will, of course, also be held to these new standards and will be responsible for mitigating the impact of their noise on neighbours.”

Other reforms include streamlined licensing controls, updated planning rules, reduced regulatory burden for smaller venues (those under 500 square metres), a fund of $500,000 to help heritage venues undertake expensive sound proofing, and the long-awaited release of a review of noise regulations by the Environmental Protection Authority.

Music Victoria CEO Patrick Donovan commented, “Overall, it’s a great package and a big win for the music industry. We have something worth protecting, and by addressing the issues in our 2012 position paper, the Government has listened and acted on our recommendations.”

Donovan added that it needed to work with the Government to ensure that legislation also covered rehearsal studios: “After all, they are an essential feeder into the live music chain.”

Melbourne live music activists as Jon Perring. Ashley Admiraal, and Dr. Kate Shaw have been lobbying for the Agent of Change since the 2003 Live Music Taskforce recommendations. Music Victoria, SLAM (Save Live Music Australia) and FairGo4LiveMusic pushed for it again in the Industry Position Paper delivered to the Live Music Roundtable in 2012.

The reforms were mooted by Guy for January and then in April. In late July, SLAM attacked the Minister for delays, asserting that the music industry had “lost faith” in him.

As The Music Network reported last week, five live music spaces have been affected in recent months by noise complaints. As a result, Pure Pop in St. Kilda has to move this month while Tago Mago in Thornbury revealed the building’s landlord wanted to break their lease.


Powered by
Looking to hire? List your vacancy today!

Related articles