Amendments proposed by the Queensland Government are expected to provide relief to families in popular Queensland tourist areas from the excessive noise, offensive social behaviour and violence that can come from party houses.

Deputy Premier and Minister for State Development, Infrastructure and Planning Jeff Seeney said proposed changes to the Sustainable Planning Act would give Councils greater say over party houses. The amendments will deal with the problems caused for locals when residential dwellings are regularly hired, rented or leased out for the purpose of hosting events.

According to Mr Seeney, the move shows that the government has a strong plan to create a brighter future for residents and tourists in Queensland’s most popular holiday destinations. Blaming the previous Labor Government’s lack of planning, which allowed party houses to cause problems on the Gold Coast, at Noosa on the Sunshine Coast, as well as in Cairns and on North Stradbroke Island, he said their laws allowed events to cause nuisance in the form of traffic hazards, excessive noise, offensive social behaviour, violence, littering, illegal activities and criminal activity.

The present Government has listened to community concerns and has already taken action by giving police greater power to deal with anti-social behaviour at out of control events. The new amendments will give councils the power to decide where these houses can operate, and ensure existing or new party houses obtain a development approval.

Councils can then identify a ‘party house restriction area’ in its planning scheme meaning that no residential dwelling in the area will have a current or past right to operate as a ‘party house’ unless otherwise approved by council.

Member for Mermaid Beach, Ray Stevens said he was very pleased to be part of a Government that is empowering local councils to regulate the operation of party houses. He observes the amendments will be a win for families that, through no fault of their own, have suffered at the hands of party house operators who deliberately and knowingly flouted the rules.

Member for Noosa, Glen Elmes also expressed his happiness that Councils would now have planning powers to regulate the operations of party houses.