The folks behind beloved music festivals Splendour In The Grass, Falls Festival, and Laneway Festival say they will “consider their future” in New South Wales if the state government reinstates a licensing system which subjects “high risk” events to extra regulations.
Representing Fuzzy Operations, Laneway Festival, and Cattleyard Promotions, The Australian Festival Association (AFA) has suggested urgent action if the NSW government refuses to heed the findings of a parliamentary committee, which successfully called for the laws to be scrapped last month.
Despite those findings, NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian‘s government introduced legislation in Parliament last week in an attempt to reinstall a safety program which maintains those “high risk” designations.
In addition to the “high risk” thing – which organisers have called an opaque system which burdens events with over-the-top safety management requirements – the AFA is concerned the government will reject calls to institute an ongoing industry roundtable to hash out the issues.
The AFA states yesterday’s meeting with Minister for Customer Service Victor Dominello saw the government “[stop] short of committing to the establishment of industry’s reasonable ask for a roundtable in the legislation. ”
The statement references a severe “uncertainty and a lack of meaningful consultation” around the issue of regulations.
NSW Labor MPs have already called out the proposed action, saying the warning is the result of “arrogance” on behalf of the government.
There’s something wrong with a government that can’t just talk things through. https://t.co/tuPNk6Ltvw
— John Graham (@JohnGrahamALP) October 21, 2019
All of this comes after Berejiklian’s claim that her government would reject the reported findings of the NSW coroner’s report into deaths at music festivals (reminder: that leaked report allegedly calls for pill testing to be allowed at NSW events).
Not an easy time to be a festival organiser in NSW, let alone a punter.Source: The Sydney Morning Herald
Image: Mark Metcalfe / Getty Images