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Minister Kean takes a question during Question Time

15 August 2018

Mr MICHAEL JOHNSEN (Upper Hunter) (15:11): My question is addressed to the Minister for Innovation and Better Regulation. How is the Liberal-Nationals Government helping grow New South Wales through the sharing economy and empowering consumers and small business, and are there any alternative views?

Mr MATT KEAN (Hornsby—Minister for Innovation and Better Regulation) (15:11): Hello, Mr Deputy Speaker—or should I say, "Kia ora", which as you well know is "hello" in Maori? It is also the name of my favourite listing on Airbnb in the whole of New South Wales and happens to be in the electorate of the member for Upper Hunter, a great member doing great things for his local community, particularly in representing the interests of those people who own investment properties in Gloucester. Why is that relevant?

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order! The Clerk will stop the clock. The Minister will be heard in silence.

Mr MATT KEAN: You might wonder why that is relevant, but yesterday this Government passed the toughest laws in the nation when it comes to short-term holiday letting. We know short-term holiday letting allows billions of dollars to come into the New South Wales economy and it gives consumers in this State more choice at lower cost, so it is a great thing for this State. It took this Government to pass those important reforms in this State. That is why it is so important they were passed. Our laws are the toughest in the nation. What it will mean under our policy is that if someone has two strikes against the code of conduct in two years, they will be banned from all platforms for five years—that is right: five years. Neighbours should not have to cop bad behaviour in New South Wales, and our laws will make sure that they do not.

In addition to that we recognise that living in strata carries with it unique challenges. For those people who live in a strata scheme, we are allowing owners corporations to restrict short-term holiday letting in those strata schemes with a vote of 75 per cent, which we think gets the balance right between the needs of property owners and the interests of neighbours, who should be able to enjoy the peaceful quiet of their own homes. This is just one of a number of reforms where this Government puts consumers first in this State, whether it is with Airbnb or perhaps gift cards, where we have put $60 million back in the pockets of citizens right across this State. Perhaps it is in the area of ticket scalping, where our laws are busting the business model of dodgy ticket scalpers in New South Wales. Perhaps it was taking on the New South Wales RSL and cleaning it up so that people can have confidence that when they give donations to charity they will be put to their intended purposes.

These are all the ways this Government is putting consumers first and protecting people in New South Wales. That stands in stark contrast to those opposite, because they never want to put consumers first. They never want to stand up for the little guy. The Leader of the Opposition had no policy in relation to gift cards, no policy in relation to ticket scalping and no—

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: The Clerk will stop the clock. The Minister will resume his seat until there is silence. The Minister may continue.

Mr MATT KEAN: The Leader of the Opposition opposed our inquiry into the RSL. The Opposition has no policies when it comes to putting consumers first in this State. Those on the other side of the Chamber consider themselves the alternative Government. The Leader of the Opposition wants to be the alternative Premier but he has no policies whatsoever.

Labor does not have any policies but I do appreciate one thing—they supported yesterday in the upper House our proposals to introduce reforms to short-term holiday letting in this State. That brings me back to Kia Ora, the palatial five-bedroom, five-bathroom manor of Gloucester. It is described by the owner as a "luxurious home on 30 acres of rolling hills with one of the best views of the Barrington Tops". Who could be the owner of this property? None other than the baroness of Strathfield. She is not the people's princess; she is the aristocrat of Airbnb.

The member for Strathfield's neighbours are happy that we are cracking down on party houses because partying would go on a fair bit at the manor of Gloucester. The member for Strathfield is particularly happy that she can now rent out her property for 365 days of the year. I am sure—I have it on good authority—that the member for Strathfield has two calendars on her fridge. One calendar is so that she can count the number of days she can let out her property. The second is so that she can could down the number of days until 23 September. You might ask: What is on 23 September? What is the significance of this date? Let me tell you. [Extension of time]

The second calendar on the member for Strathfield's fridge is one that counts down the number of days until 23 September.

Ms Yasmin Catley: Point of order: My point of order relates to Standing Order 129. Obviously the Minister has strayed from the question. I would like to know if the Minister could tell us about another estate, the Dungowan estate.

Mr MATT KEAN: This is relevant to the question.

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: The Minister is being relevant.

Mr MATT KEAN: It is relevant to the sharing economy: All these people are sharing ambitions for 23 September. The 23 September is the day when Kevin Rudd's protection racket for the Leader of the Opposition officially ends. It is the day when the rank and file of the Labor Party no longer have a say in who their leader is.

Mr Paul Lynch: Point of order—

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order! I want to hear the point of order. The Clerk will stop the clock. I ask members of the House to have respect for their elders—the member for Liverpool and I.

Mr Paul Lynch: The Minister is clearly now embarking on something that has nothing to do with the question he was originally asked. I might add: Ray Hadley was right.

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: I am sure the Minister is about to show us how he is being relevant to the question.

Mr MATT KEAN: One person who is not looking at 23 September is the member for Liverpool, because he is the only one who will not be the Leader of the Opposition after that date.

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Stop the clock. Member of the House to come to order.

Mr Paul Lynch: Point of order: My point of order clearly relates to Standing Order 129. That last comment certainly has nothing to do with the question the minister was asked. I am happy to concede that I am not a candidate for leader, but I know a lot more about numbers than the member for Hornsby ever will.

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: I ask the Minister to wait; I have not ruled yet.

Mr MATT KEAN: I retract my comment about the member for Liverpool. He can be a contender for the leadership. We would be delighted if he was. He knows about numbers in housing commissions. They are all lining up—not just the member for Strathfield. The member for Keira has bought a new suit. He has divested himself of his property empire, which surely shows ambition. There is the member for Kogarah, once the messiah—no‑one has promised so much yet delivered so little. The General Secretary would prefer the member for Mount Druitt over the member for Kogarah to be the Leader of the Opposition.

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: I ask the Minister to return to the leave of the question.

Mr MATT KEAN: Luke Foley is a liability. The Opposition knows it. We know it. The people of New South Wales know it. The sooner he takes flight the better.