This week in committees, hearings commence into the NDIS and the CBD and South East Light Rail Project , and Portfolio Committee No. 6 travels to Newcastle and Tamworth for the inquiry into the music and arts economy. You can find further information on all current and past inquiries on our website.
NDIS inquiry underway
On Monday 17 September, Portfolio Committee No. 2 commenced hearings for the inquiry into the implementation of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) and the provision of disability services in New South Wales.
The committee heard from a range of key stakeholders, including the NSW Government, the National Disability Insurance Authority (NDIA) and the NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission. Peak organisations within the disability sector, such as National Disability Services and People with Disability Australia also gave evidence.
Individuals shared their experiences with the committee, including participants and carers, as well as individuals who are not covered by the NDIS. A second public hearing is scheduled for Tuesday 2 October 2018.
Light rail inquiry holds first hearing
The newly established Public Accountability Committee kicked off its inquiry into the impact of the CBD and South East Light Rail Project with a public hearing on 20 August. The project involves a new 12 kilometre route with 19 stops extending from Circular Quay along George Street to Central, through Surry Hills to Moore Park, then to Kensington and Kingsford via Anzac Parade and Randwick via Alison Road and High Street.
The committee took evidence from representatives from Transport for NSW about the project, as well as Randwick Local Council, City of Sydney and the Auditor General of NSW. The committee also heard from three community groups – Saving Sydney Trees, Keep Sydney Beautiful and the Sydney Light Rail Action Group. The next hearing will take place on 3 October.
Inquiry into music and the arts strikes a chord in Newcastle and Tamworth
Portfolio Committee No. 6 recently concluded its regional hearings and site visits with visits to Newcastle and Tamworth.
On 23 August 2018, the committee held a hearing at Newcastle, taking evidence from local councils, artists, including Grant Walmsely from The Screaming Jets, venue operators and local councils. Stakeholders discussed a range of concerns, including gentrification and its adverse effect on live music venues, and measures to address those impacts. In the evening, the committee visited The Lass O’Gowrie, a vital performance space for new and emerging artists in the local community which is under threat from neighbouring development.
On 13 September 2018, the committee visited Tamworth, the ‘home of country music’. The committee heard from local businesses, including venue and travel operators, the Country Music Association of Australia, the Tamworth Songwriters Association, Tamworth Regional Council and an artist manager. Following the hearing, the committee visited the Tamworth Regional Entertainment and Conference Centre, West Tamworth Leagues Club, The Longyard and listened to live music at The Welder’s Dog.
The committee also conducted hearings in Sydney on 24 August and 14 September 2018, taking evidence from streaming services Spotify and Amazon, ClubsNSW and AHA NSW, festival and venue operators, artists including KLP and a member of The Rubens, FBi community radio, Keep Sydney Open, Support Act, APRA AMCOS/the Live Music Office, local councils, the MEAA, government agencies, Sydney Opera House and Triple J.