My adjournment matter is for the Minister for Roads and Road Safety. On 21 September last year, by way of adjournment, I requested that the minister disallow horse-drawn vehicles as a class of vehicle inside the Hoddle grid. I explained in my adjournment that while Melbourne City Council had power to discontinue street trading permits for horse-drawn vehicles, as it has done, only the state government has the power to ban horse-drawn vehicles from using the CBD roads entirely, yet the minister responded on 31 October that schedule 11 of the Local Government Act 1989 includes powers to remove and impound vehicles, power to restrict traffic and power to restrict road use by vehicles of a particular size.
However, Melbourne City Council, or any council for that matter, does not have the jurisdiction to create a new law to ban horse-drawn vehicles from City of Melbourne roads entirely. The only way that horse-drawn vehicles can be removed from the central city is for a change to the road safety rules. VicRoads has confirmed this by saying the City of Melbourne does not have the legal authority to ban horse-drawn carriages from the road as this is allowed for under the Road Safety Act 1986.
It is VicRoads and the Minister for Roads and Road Safety who have the ability to change these rules. As I mentioned, the minister mentioned in his response to me on 31 October last year that the Melbourne City Council should use schedule 11 of the Local Government Act. I am advised that this is incorrect. Schedule 11 of the act is not able to be used to restrict horse-drawn vehicles from local roads under any of these powers. The power to impound vehicles applies to abandoned vehicles that remain abandoned for a number of days. The power to restrict road use by vehicles of a particular size applies to vehicles over a particular size, meaning that all vehicles under the size of a horse-drawn vehicle would retain access to the road in question.