Food Amendment Bill 2015 No. 51

Read into Hansard on Wednesday 28th October 2015

FOOD AMENDMENT BILL 2015 (No. 51)

Second Reading

[12.37 p.m.]

Mr VALENTINE (Hobart) – Mr President, this legislation, on the surface, looks good, and is less complicated for the vendors.  There is no question about that.  However, when you drill down a little bit, there are a couple of things that concern me about this.  It will not stop the need for health inspectors to check them.  What you are doing is saying, ‘Someone can register a food van in Glamorgan-Spring Bay, lowest price.’  They might even council-shop to get the lowest price where they are going to go and register.

Mrs Taylor – Or the easiest.

Mr VALENTINE – Or the easiest.  Then they come back and operate in Hobart.  It is the Hobart health inspectors that have to do the job.  They have to check the van to make sure it is operating within the act.  The Hobart council is not getting any money for that.  They have to support that inspection process.  I have to tell you, those inspection processes are needed.  Those health checks are very important.  I caught food poisoning a few weeks ago from a food van.  I will not say where, but it happens.  It is very important that those inspections take place.  What you are doing here is saying, ‘One council gets the money, but the other council has to do the work.’  There are some issues there.

Mrs Taylor – It is not just about food.

Mr VALENTINE – No, I understand that.  For other things there might not be as much inspection required, but there might be.

It simplifies administration, but it reduces local government revenue and exacerbates the problem.  It is shouted from the rooftops by business – ‘They do not pay rates, and they do not have the overheads.  They can operate with far less strictures than we do.’  This is the established business, say, in Salamanca, when you are going to put a food van out the front late on a Friday night where people can get a gourmet sausage, or whatever it is.  They are the sorts of things that come up.  That does not mean that there is not merit in this.  I am saying these are some of the issues.

I have just said all that, but my council does not have a problem.