Canberra’s national public spaces include a range of excellent venues in the Parliamentary Zone, Commonwealth Park, Kings Park, Anzac Parade, Aspen Island and Lake Burley Griffin for cultural, ceremonial, community celebrations and displays.
The National Capital Authority (NCA) manages these sites on behalf of the Commonwealth and is responsible for approving the use of National Land for events, ensuring that events are in keeping with the dignity of the National Capital and comply with legislative requirements.
The NCA is seeking public comment on proposed changes to its venue hire fees and charges, which will affect event organisers using National Land in the ACT.
There are over 1,000 events held on National Land each year, ranging from small gatherings like weddings and birthday parties through to major public or commercial events like Skyfire, Floriade, Enlighten and Spilt Milk.
Commercial or exclusive use bookings only account for 5-10 per cent of the total number of bookings taken by the NCA. The remainder are private or community events.
The NCA reviewed its Events on National Land Policy and Events Venue Hire Fees and Charges and found that compared to the New South Wales and ACT Governments we were charging event organisers substantially lower fees for venue hire.
The NCA is seeking public comment on the proposed changes to its policy and fee structure, which include:
- Changes to the fees for events that require the total occupation of a venue, which excludes general public use, or which charge an entry fee, or conduct commercial activities
- Modest price increases for private and community events
The NCA is proposing a $50 administration fee for private events and to step up the cost for exclusive and commercial events to be closer to the market rate.
The proposed changes mostly affect exclusive and commercial events. At the moment, these events are charged $0.10/m2/day and the draft Events Venue Hire Fees and Charges proposes to increase exclusive events to $0.20/m2/day and commercial events to $0.25/m2/day. This is the first increase in venue hire fees since their introduction in 2009 and is still considerably lower than the fees charged by the ACT Government for commercial events at prime locations.
The NCA will undertake a review of the policy in 12 months, to assess any impacts and to review the fee structure.
The outcome of the consultation process is outlined in the below report.