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Byron Shire
February 27, 2021

Silence stokes fears

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Doug Luke, VOHL

More than one month ago Victims of Holiday Letting (VOHL) made a written query to NSW Planning Minister, Mr Rob Stokes.

An extract: ‘It has been more than one year since submissions for the Discussion Paper “Short Term Rental Accommodation A New Regulatory Framework” closed on 11 September, 2019. These submissions have not been publicly released.

‘On page 4 of this Discussion Paper it states “All submissions will be made publicly available. Government is required by law to release that information”.

‘Further, it states “It is also a statutory requirement that all submissions are provided to the Legislative Review Committee of Parliament”. Has this legislative requirement been undertaken?

‘Submissions to the first public exhibition “Explanation of Intended Effect STRA Planning Framework” closed on 16 November, 2018. Submissions were made public within two months of this date.

‘I am seeking an explanation as to why there has been an inordinate delay in publication of these submissions and the future date that this oversight will be corrected.’

At the time of writing this letter, submissions have still not been published. Neither Mr Stokes, nor his ministerial staff have responded to the query. Department of Planning staff confirmed that the submissions had been sent to Mr Stokes some time previously.

VOHL is perplexed about why the submissions have not been published, as required by law. Publication should not have been delayed by the pandemic.

Could it be that the NSW government is concealing something? Perhaps it is the reported submission from Fire and Rescue NSW that was critical of the proposed Fire Safety standard in the policy.

Is this another example of a lack of transparency from the NSW government?


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1 COMMENT

  1. Are the DPIE executives slow readers? This is a very long time to release submissions. Once DPIE staff have binned the thousands of astroturfed template submissions, that are all identical, that they received from Airbnb hosts, then there will be only a few hundred left.
    Perhaps Planning Minister Stokes could get some assistance from Premier Gladys to help with reading the submissions. She should have plenty of time now that she has dumped her close intimate personal relationship with former MP Daryl Maquire. Submissions would make for great bedtime reading.

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