Australia: NSW Government Bulletin - 23 July 2014

A complaint has been lodged with the NSW Privacy Commissioner in relation to the sharing of Opal card information by Transport for NSW with law enforcement agencies. The Opal Privacy Policy at paragraph 6.2.8 allows Transport for NSW to "disclose personal information or travel history to a law enforcement agency that is necessary for law enforcement purposes, for the investigation of an offence, for the enforcement of criminal law or to assist in locating a missing person."

The complaint, lodged by NSW Greens MP and justice spokesman David Shoebridge, relates to the giving of bundled consent to the disclosure of personal information under the Opal Privacy Policy during the Opal card sign up process with no ability to "opt out". Transport for NSW has released a statement in response to media reports.

The NSW Privacy Commissioner, Dr Elizabeth Coombs, has responded indicating that Transport for NSW and NSW Police are having discussions about putting arrangements in place for rules around how Opal information will be accessed by Police.

To start a conversation about Government Bulletin or issues of interest to NSW government lawyers, join the LinkedIn group NSW Government Lawyers by clicking on this link. Membership is open to lawyers employed in the public sector.

In the media

Uni apologises to students for privacy breach
The University of Newcastle has apologised to several thousand students after personal information was posted online. The University says the student administration information inadvertently became available in an 'online test environment', but access was quickly closed down (19 July 2014). More...

Police Commissioner defends access to Opal card records
NSW Police Commissioner Andrew Scipione has defended police being given powers to access Opal card records as a crucial tool to ensure the "safety and security of the community" (15 July 2014). More...

Sex abuse royal commission: NSW DPP calls for 'separate court structure' for sexual assault cases
The New South Wales Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) has told a royal commission hearing he would like to see a separate court structure to deal with sexual assault cases (16 July 2014). More...

Cunneen 'used inappropriate language' in Volkers advice
The former NSW Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), Nicholas Cowdery, has told a royal commission hearing that the language used by crown prosecutor Margaret Cunneen in advice given to him was inappropriate (14 July 2014). More...

Statement by the NSW Attorney General regarding Judge Garry Neilson
Confidence in the judiciary is a critical part of ensuring broader community support for the legal system. With that context I was extremely concerned to read the comments of His Honour Judge Garry Neilson in regard to his views on incest, and will, on behalf of the NSW Government, and on behalf of the NSW community refer His Honour to the Judicial Commission of NSW (11 July 2014). More...

ICAC public inquiry into allegations concerning former UNE chancellor
The NSW ICAC public inquiry into allegations concerning John Cassidy, the former chancellor of the University of New England will start on 21 July 2014. The Commission is investigating allegations that Mr Cassidy provided confidential and/or sensitive information that he acquired in the course of his official functions as chancellor (07 July 2014). More...

In practice and courts

ICAC: Prosecutions information webpage updated
The ICAC's webpage on prosecution activity relating to Commission investigations has been updated on 16 July 2014. Prosecutions information webpage updated

NSW Courts: Justice Journey app
NSW Attorney General has launched an innovative new mobile app to help victims of crime and their families navigate the justice system. The Victims Advisory Board provides strategic advice to the Government on issues, services, policies and legislation affecting victims of crime (11 July 2014). More...

Have your say about the NCAT website
The NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal (NCAT) is seeking customer feedback on the usability of the NCAT website (18 July 2014). Have your say about the NCAT website

Published – articles, papers, reports

NCAT Legal Bulletin Issue 2of 2014 (July 2014)
The NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal (NCAT) Legal Bulletin is a regular Publication highlighting relevant and interesting case law from across the various State jurisdictions, and other useful information and updates that are of significance to the Tribunal's work (July 2014) More...


O'Hara v Independent Liquor & Gaming Authority [2014] NSWSC 880
ADMINISTRATIVE LAW - judicial review - decision of Independent Liquor and Gaming Authority - application to increase gaming machine threshold at venue - whether Authority had a fixed rule for the local government area - whether prejudgment - speech by Chairman immediately following determination discussing the application - Chairman expresses personal views about gambling and gaming machines - whether apprehended bias - reasons for determination - not statutorily mandated - reasons prepared later by consultant to the Authority - reasons going beyond discussions at meeting where application determined - whether top down ex post facto reasoning - reasons approved by four of five members of Authority - one member had retired - whether her absence invalidated reasons - effect of invalidating reasons on determination made. More...

Shvetsova v The University of New England [2014] NSWSC 918
ADMINISTRATIVE LAW - Judicial review - whether decision by university justiciable - application for judicial review –dismissed More...

Metgasco Ltd v Minister for Resources & Energy [2014] NSWSC 908
PROCEDURE - notice to produce - administrative law proceedings - notice served shortly after summons commencing proceedings - plaintiff seeks leave to amend summons - notice to produce premature - use of notice to obtain discovery - need for exceptional circumstances for discovery in administrative law matters - notice set aside. More...

Re Felicity; FM v Secretary, Department of Family and Community Services (No 3) [2014] NSWCA 226
ADMINISTRATIVE LAW - judicial review - appeal from Children's Court to the District Court - no appeal against judgment on statutory appeal to the District Court - whether error of law on the face of the record or jurisdictional error established ADMINISTRATIVE LAW - procedural fairness - apprehended bias - allegation of failure by judge to consider applicant's submissions - direction by judge that litigant in person would be assisted by opposing counsel ESTOPPEL - res judicata - issue estoppel - findings made about child when determining care order - application to rescind or vary care order - whether earlier findings can be re-examined - whether issue estoppel can arise when there is express jurisdiction to address changed circumstances. More...

Friends of Malua Bay Inc v Perkins [2014] NSWLEC 95
ADMINISTRATIVE LAW - judicial review - development consent for subdivision - whether development consistent with zone objectives - whether opinion or satisfaction of Council required - cl 11(3) of the Eurobodalla Rural Local Environmental Plan 1987 (the LEP) - objective standard imposed - whether consideration given to matters identified in cl 23(2) of the LEP - whether statement of impacts of development on the environment was provided as required by cl 23(3) of the LEP - requirement for such a statement satisfied by the provisions of statement of environmental effects. More...



Crimes (Forensic Procedures) Regulation 2014 (2014-449) — published LW 18 July 2014 - Includes Access to, and disclosure of, information on DNA database system, Use of information on DNA database system, Disclosure of information

Human Tissue Amendment (Blood Donor Certificate) Regulation 2014 (SR 381/2014)
Notification 20/06/2014 Published on the NSW Legislation website Commencement 6/07/2014 This Regulation commences on 6 July 2014. The object of this Regulation is to amend the blood donor certificate that must be signed before any blood may be removed or used for the purposes of a blood transfusion or certain other therapeutic, medical or scientific purposes.

This publication does not deal with every important topic or change in law and is not intended to be relied upon as a substitute for legal or other advice that may be relevant to the reader's specific circumstances. If you have found this publication of interest and would like to know more or wish to obtain legal advice relevant to your circumstances please contact one of the named individuals listed.

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Christine Jones
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