Ms JODI McKAY (Strathfield) [4.37 p.m.]: I am pleased to take part in the discussion on this petition. I congratulate the member for Tamworth on bringing this petition before the House. Garnering 10,000 signatures is not easy and I congratulate the member opposite and those who signed the petition. I note it is signed by the patrons of the Imperial Hotel at Bombala. This is an important issue, both in metropolitan areas and in rural and regional areas. I note the member's comments that there are two separate issues for discussion. Related issues are those of alcohol-related violence and antisocial behaviour, which are of concern across New South Wales.
A lockout was implemented by the Government in February 2014. The member opposite has gone through what that meant, but part of it included a restriction on takeaway liquor sales. There was the 1.30 a.m. lockout, minimum sentences for a fatal one-punch attack, free buses and increased on-the-spot fines for antisocial behaviour. The package was introduced and the Opposition supported it. According to the Government, the restrictions on takeaway alcohol sales were designed to reduce alcohol-related violence. Those restrictions apply to all liquor stores, hotels, registered clubs and other venues that are licenced to sell takeaway liquor. The member for Tamworth mentioned the review process. It is important to note that no transparent process has been undertaken by the Government in relation to this issue. I wish to talk about the review, as it is my understanding that the Premier indicated its findings would be handed down in February.
There is confusion about this review. In January the Baird Government revealed it would conduct a review in June 2015 using new data from the New South Wales Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research. At that time the office of the Deputy Premier told Fairfax media that the Government would review the laws in June 2015. In August when he spoke on 2GB radio the Deputy Premier said he was not sure where those reports had come from. The Premier then stepped in and confirmed there would be a statutory review in February 2016 and that no laws would be changed in the interim. Questions were asked about the confusion between the Minister for Justice and Police and the Premier, and we have still not got to the bottom of that. Today we were told that the review on the 10.00 p.m. restrictions on takeaway sales was underway. Apparently the Government indicated there would be a review to investigate the nature and extent of any positive or negative impacts on the restrictions, including financial impacts on venues authorised to sell takeaway liquor.
The problem is that very little detail beyond that has been provided to the community—for instance, on the website I cannot find the terms of reference for the review. Also not published are the terms of reference, the commencement time, the cost of the review, who is conducting the review and their level of expertise, and what research has been done to gather evidence for the review to consider. There is no explanation of the methodology that is being employed. There is no transparency and we do not know who has been consulted. Has the Ambulance Service of NSW or the NSW Police Force been consulted? Is crime data being reviewed and health data being analysed? These are the types of issues that the Government must be upfront about. We have heard that it is a two-stage review and I acknowledge the issues are important to rural and regional areas and to metropolitan areas. It is important to know what the review is about. I ask the member for Tamworth to provide more information.
The Opposition is concerned about the way in which the review is being conducted; it is deficient in many respects. If rural and regional New South Wales is to achieve the outcome it wants, details of the review must be made public to provide more clarity. It is important for communities to know about the review. I thank the member for Tamworth for presenting this petition to the House. I have raised issues of concern to the Opposition and most likely to the community, given that this petition garnered so many signatures. I appreciate having been given an opportunity to speak in this debate.