Premier Gladys Berejiklian has announced the lockout laws in Sydney’s CBD will be repealed.
On 8 September, Berejiklian said Sydney’s nightlife needs to reflect its status as a global city and acknowledged the impact the lockout laws have had on businesses.
“While we will await the committee’s report, I agree it’s time to enhance Sydney’s nightlife.
“The night time economy is a key driver of jobs in our city and we need to do everything we can to strengthen it.”
The lockout laws will be pushed back from 1:30am in Sydney’s CBD, however the yet-to-be-confirmed closing times will not apply to Kings Cross, the area that’s arguably been hit the hardest.
Established businesses including Hugos, World Bar and Goldfish Bar all closed their doors as a result of the lockout laws.
“Although we are disappointed the Kings Cross precinct has not been included as part of these changes, we are committed to working with the government and stakeholders on future changes to ensure Kings Cross returns to an area of burgeoning arts, culture and music,” Solotel CEO Justine Baker told TheShout.
However, Berejiklian’s announcement has sparked criticism due to the fact a report from the government’s inquiry into Sydney’s night time economy has yet to be published. The inquiry saw close to 800 submissions from figures including Baker and Merivale CEO Justin Hemmes.
“We note that everyone wants to feel safe, no matter what time of day or night and we will work closely with all stakeholders to create a vibrant future for a city with a safe, fun and diverse culture that reflects the 24 hour energy of Tokyo, London and New York,” said Hemmes.
The report is due to be released to parliament on 30 September, with Berejiklian set to make a final decision shortly after.