Date: 6 October 2021
Court/Tribunal: Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal
Judicial Officer/Tribunal Member: Member Browne
Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld) Sections: ss 24, 26
Rights Considered: Property rights; Right to privacy and reputation
Other Legislation: Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal Act 2009 (Qld) s 22
Keywords: Commercial; Planning and Environment

The applicant sought a stay of a decision from the Commissioner for Liquor and Gaming Regulation to approve a commercial hotel licence application of MFB Properties (NQ) Pty Ltd for a premises at Palm Cove. The Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld) was mentioned by the Tribunal, acknowledging that they have taken into account the potential human rights impacted in their decision.

The applicant’s submitted that the grant of the licence was met with widespread community objection, that their interest will be adversely affected if the stay is not granted and that their business model will not survive if they are to be located adjacent to a premises with a commercial hotel licence: at [2]. The applicant further argued that the busy commercial hotel will interfere with their boutique upmarket accommodation based on relaxation, tranquillity and quiet, and that there are genuine public safety issues that have not been sufficiently addressed or considered: at [2].

The Tribunal considered evidence from MFB Properties (NQ) Pty Ltd regarding the effect of the stay if granted, including delayed recruitment impeding employment opportunities, the approaching easement of COVID restrictions, the significant effect on revenue, the alternate processes available if there were to be community interruption and the time and money put into obtaining the licence: at [7] - [16].

The Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld) was raised in relation to the Tribunal taking into account the potential human rights that may be impacted. The Tribunal briefly mentioned property rights (s 24) and right to privacy and reputation (s 26) that may be impacted, but was not persuaded that this was significant enough to demonstrate an immediate need for a stay: at [19].

The Tribunal refused the application for the stay in these circumstances: at [21].

Visit the judgment: Reef House Property Pty Ltd & Ors v Commissioner for Liquor and Gaming Regulation & Anor [2021] QCAT 383