Policy on Gated Communities

If we are elected to run a local council or State Government, we will encourage the setting up of “Gated Communities”, which are sometimes called “Project Villages”. A “Gated Community” is a cluster of between 20 and 1000 houses, with entry restricted to residents and approved persons. By limiting who can live in a “Gated Community”, it is possible to enforce higher standards of behaviour than exist in the outside world, and completely eliminate crime and neighbourhood disputes.

For best results, a “Gated Community” should be surrounded by a concrete wall that is six metres high. Having an expensive wall around the entire suburb is very much cheaper than having a wall around one property. There should be an entrance with security guards, or, better still, police. The cost of this level of security for one house would be prohibitive, but for 1000 houses it is very affordable. Having this sort of security means your children can play outside and exercise without any danger, while in many overseas cities, parents will not allow children to play outside.

A “Gated Community” needs rules as to who is allowed in. It is best to limit visitors to residents, and other visitors at the “management committee’s” discretion. A resident would provide the “management committee” with a list of people he or she would like to have visiting. The list would be automatically approved, subject to passing a criminal record check. If visitors caused trouble, they would be removed from the list. If a resident suggested visitors who caused trouble, that resident would in future not be able to have people automatically approved.

It is important to be able to expel residents from a “Gated Community”. Initially the residents would be people who happen to be living in the area. Some of the residents might have serious criminal records. Some of them might be serial pests. The rules of the “Gated Community” would allow a petition to be circulated to expel a household. If there were sufficient signatures on the petition, a referendum would be held. If a majority of property owners voted to expel a household, the “management committee” would compulsorily acquire their property.

A “Gated Community” needs a “management committee” or “body corporate”. All Australian States and Territories have Acts of Parliament that allow for land to be registered as a “Gated Community”, with a “body corporate” to run things. But the laws leave a lot to be desired. For example, they allow public servants to have unrestricted access to “Gated Communities”, when public servants are precisely the sort of undesirables you would wish to exclude.

A far better arrangement is to have the suburb owned by a company. Adult residents are members of the company. By virtue of being a member, a person has occupancy of the home at the address listed next to the person’s name. Having the suburb owned by a company makes it difficult for a Labor Government to changes the rules to allow undesirables to have access.

To set up a “Gated Community”, you need an area which does not have a major highway going through. You need about 80 percent of the existing residents to be desirable neighbours who have their mortgages paid off. The local council will then compulsorily acquire the entire area and will sell it to the “Gated Community” company. The 80 percent of residents will get ownership of the company by way of compensation. The owners with mortgages will have their mortgages repaid by the company, and will instead owe the money to the company. The undesirable residents will be paid the value of their houses by the company, but the company will then be able to sell their houses. It will end up not costing the local council anything.

The “Gated Community” would need to enter into a deal with the local council to prevent the local council charging excessive rates if it is taken over by the Labor Party. The deal would involve the “Gated Community” providing services to the local council instead of rates. Preferably these services would be beneficial to the residents of the “Gated Community”, such as maintaining roads in some of the area outside the “Gated Community”.

If a “Gated Community” is set up near a beach, the residents of the “Gated Community” should have the exclusive use of the beach. The “lowest common denominator” should not be able to take over a beach and force everyone else out. The Mainstream Party as a State Government will ensure that most beaches are for the exclusive use of “Gated Communities”.