WHO SHOULD READ THIS

  • Council compliance officers and town planners.

THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW

  • From 30 November 2016, body corporates and local councils can enter into licence agreements where councils may erect signs restricting parking and in the event of breaches of those parking restrictions, rangers may issue penalty infringement notices.

WHAT YOU NEED TO DO

  • McCullough Robertson has extensive experience in preparing and negotiating licence agreements and can assist local councils with the drafting of licences.

Parking has become a key issue in many strata schemes due to increasing population and a greater number of vehicles. It is no surprise that one of the most talked about changes to the NSW strata laws is the ability for body corporates to enter into licence agreements with local councils to have council rangers ‘police’ their parking.

Background
Putting aside the lack of parking spaces, body corporates are also faced with unauthorised parking on common property, vehicles blocking the entry and exits to the building or another resident’s space and the only real avenue to stop these problems is an application to the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal which can be timely and costly for body corporates and often does not deter other people from unauthorised parking. As town centres continue to grow, particularly those close to train stations where surrounding parking is limited and/or time restricted, we believe that local councils will receive an influx of complaints regarding parking issues in or around parking schemes.

Preparing and negotiating licence agreements
Under sections 112 of the Strata Schemes Management Act 2015 (NSW) and 650A of the Local Government Act 1993 (NSW), which are proposed to commence on 30 November 2016, body corporates and local councils can enter into a licence agreement where local councils may erect signs restricting parking and in the event of breaches of those parking restrictions, rangers may issue penalty infringement notices.

Council’s will ultimately receive monies paid in relation to the penalty infringement notices however this seems to be a much more cost and time effective option than pursuing breaches for parking in the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal.

These new provisions aim to alleviate the burden of body corporates having to deal with parking issues in their buildings and with the recent strata law review having revealed that parking is a continuing problem it is highly likely that body corporates will want to enter into these agreement with local councils. To streamline the process councils could prepare a standard application form and agreement which would then be used a starting point in negotiations with body corporates to enter into licence agreements under these provisions.