Local law permits
On this page:
You need a permit for particular activities, including filming, furniture in a public place, and skip bins.
Buskers are welcome in Merri-bek and may perform without a permit.
Buskers should have their own public liability insurance and are reminded to be aware of the local community when performing, ensuring:
- the free flow of footpath traffic
- that local businesses and community members are not impacted by noise levels associated with the performance.
Buskers should also observe the following guidelines:
- Buskers should operate safely at all times.
- Buskers must allow the free flow of footpath traffic in any area where they perform.
- The sound levels from a busking performance must not disrupt business trading in the area as well as restaurants and other retailers. Sound levels should be moderate and respectful of others in the same vicinity.
- Buskers should be mindful of playing in the same area for too long. Generally, buskers should not perform in the same location for longer than 2 hours on any day and no more than 3 days in the same week.
- Buskers must keep the site clean and ensure that it is left in the same condition it was found.
- Buskers should endeavour to establish good relationships with nearby traders.
- The act or performance should contribute to a positive social environment that is respectful of all community members.
For questions about busking in Merri-bek, please email email@example.com or contact us on 9240 1111.
Drinking alcohol in public places
Drinking alcohol in public places in Merri-bek is banned under local law.
This ban applies at all times and is enforced by Victoria Police who can issue an on-the-spot fine to individuals breaking the law.
This ban does not apply to:
- Licensed outdoor dining areas
- Local parks and reserves on weekends and public holidays where the drinking of alcohol is permitted from 11am to 6pm standard time and from 11am to 10pm daylight savings time.
- Special events that have a temporary liquor licence. You can find out more about temporary liquor licences on our Planning an event page.
You may need a filming permit if you are filming or taking photographs on a road, footpath, nature strip, open space, or car park that is owned or managed by us.
When a filming permit is not required
A permit is not required if your filming or photography meets all of these criteria:
- Six or less people are involved in the shoot
- Filming takes 1 day or less
- Parking restriction exemptions are not required
- Filming takes place on local roads only, as per the Melway road hierarchy and street classifications. These are the brown colour roads on the map which you can see on the Melway website.
- No road is blocked and any filming on a footpath enables access for pedestrians as required (either with a hand-held or tripod camera)
- Access to residential or business premises remains unhindered
- Filming occurs between 9am and 5pm
- If filming in a park, then the public must have unhindered use of our facilities such as playgrounds and rotundas.
A filming permit is not required for wedding photography.
Please note: you must obtain public liability insurance with a minimum of $5 million coverage before you commence filming in Merri-bek.
When a filming permit is required
A filming permit is required:
- for all television, feature films, commercials, documentaries, and music videos as well as photography undertaken as part of a trade or business (other than wedding photography)
- if you do not meet all the criteria in the above list
If you are a not-for-profit organisation or a student completing filming as part of your study, you must still obtain a permit but fees do not apply.
An application must be received at least 4 full business days in advance for the standard permit fee to apply.
There is a higher charge for:
- a permit application received less than 4 full business days before filming, or
- where the applicant has not provided all required information to us 4 full business days in advance of filming.
Filming permits incur a fee. This fee is reviewed yearly.
- A standard filming permit (up to 7 days filming) - $347.80
- A priority filming permit (where less than 4 full business days notice is provided) - $608.60 fee
- Student completing filming as part of their study - $0
- Not-for-profit organisation - $0
- Parking bay - $7 per day or $36 per week (per bay)
What you need?
Before you begin your online application, ensure that you have:
- Details of the location(s) required and estimated times of the proposed filming
- Name and contact details for the person managing the shoot on the day
(a location manager is required on the day of the shoot)
- Copy of your public liability insurance.
If you are temporarily closing or blocking a road, footpath or laneway, or restricting access, you require a filming permit with a road closure authority, and need:
- Pedestrian and Traffic Management Plan, including a Risk Management Plan (prepared by a qualified representative as required by the Road Management Act 2004 and Road Safety Act 1986)
- Site Plan
- Copy of communication for impacted community members
We recommend you read the further information about these application requirements provided below, before you apply.
A schedule of activities is not required by us.
- Apply online for a filming permit.
- As part of the online application process, you upload digital files and pay the permit application fee by Visa or MasterCard. You can also elect to have an invoice sent.
- When we receive your application, you receive an automated email confirmation that your application has been received.
You do not need to register as a user and sign in to our Online Services to apply for a filming permit. However, as a registered user, you don't need to re-enter your personal information and can keep track of requests and applications on any device.
Once your application and all material is received, we assess the application and respond within 4 business days.
For all urgent applications, a higher fee applies and will be actioned as a priority.
If any of the filming details change after you have been granted a permit, you should contact us in writing as early as possible, particularly if it requires a change in date or location of the filming. If the change involves an alternate date or location, then the permit will need to be reassessed. Consider including alternative days in your initial filming application so they can be included in your permit.
Public liability insurance
Public liability insurance is required for all filming in the Merri-bek area.
The level of insurance required depends on the scale of the filming.
- When a filming permit is not required, $5 million liability insurance is required.
- When a filming permit is required, 10 million liability insurance is required (including for road/footpath closure)
- When it is a large scale production (involving more than 20 people), $20 million liability insurance is required.
Generally, traffic should be held no longer than three minutes per 15 minute block.
When you temporarily close or block a road, footpath or laneway or restrict access you need:
A site map shows the location of your equipment, unit base (if you have one), staff, and equipment to be used during the film shoot.
Pedestrian and traffic management plan
A traffic management plan outlines how you will manage the pedestrian or road traffic impacted by your filming.
In the case of a road closure, the plan should detail how traffic will be managed during the filming and include specific details such as hold and release traffic management methods.
For a pedestrian traffic management plan, this should include details such as where safety cones and signs will be placed and whether spotters will be used to assist impacted pedestrians.
These plans must outline your objectives and strategies for managing the proposed activity to ensure public safety.
For all road closures and temporary block and hold, the engagement of a qualified traffic management company is required to design and implement a traffic management plan.
Risk management plan
A risk management plan must be submitted to us for all filming activities. It must include:
- identification of any risks
- measurement of the risks
- the proposed management of those risks.
Letter to impacted residents or traders
Any resident or business owner in the immediate vicinity of the filming that will be impacted or inconvenienced should be notified of any possible impact.
A letter to the impacted residents advising them of the arrangements for the filming is required. The letter must include a contact within your organisation where concerns may be directed.
If there is a significant level of impact, a permit may not be granted.
We must be advised of any objections.
Subject to availability, parking bays can be hired for the duration of the film shoot.
Please apply with your filming application for a car bay permit.
We also require notification of any vehicles over 4.5 tonnes or 7.5 metres long due to special legal requirements for these vehicles.
VicRoads managed roads
If you want to film on a VicRoads managed road, you should also contact VicRoads to discuss their filming requirements. See VicRoads events and filming for details.
You still need to apply to us for a filming permit.
Victoria Police only need to be notified if you are undertaking activities that may cause concern or alarm within the community. For example use of firearms, explosives, stunts.
See Victoria Police film and television for details.
If you require further information or would like to discuss your film project, please contact us.
For large scale productions of greater than 20 people, please email our Communications team.
We do not allow shipping containers to be stored on public land, including on roads.
Fines may be issued if a shipping container is on public land or roads.
You need a permit to put a skip bin on a road or Council land.
If you want to hire a skip bin you need to contact an accredited company that hires out skip bins. We do not hire out skip bins.
Company contacts may be found on:
The skip bin hire company contacts us on your behalf to request a permit to place the skip bin on a public street. These companies are accredited with us and carry the appropriate level of public liability insurance.
Ask the skip bin hire company to give you a copy of the permit from the Council. This will be your proof that the company has paid for and received a permit on your behalf.
Companies seeking to place skip bins (mini-skips) on public land must obtain a permit prior to placing the bin and follow the conditions of the skip bin permit. Failure to do so may result in a fine being issued.
A permit is not required if a skip bin is placed on private property.
You can place a skip bin on a road only if you have a permit and only in approved locations. Not all roads are suitable for the placement of a skip bin. If the proposed location is not suitable, we will discuss alternatives with you.
A skip bin cannot be placed on a footpath.
You must leave at least 3 metres of road pavement width for traffic. If parking is permitted on the road, you need to leave 2 metres between the skip and the parking bay.
Do not put a skip bin in a place that blocks Melbourne Water drains, Telstra poles, or other service authority assets.
If you are placing the skip bin in a cul-de-sac, you need the written consent of all residents whose access will be restricted.
A skip bin must have reflectors and lights that make the bin visible in all conditions for a minimum distance of 100 metres.
The bin must also have the supplier’s name and telephone number in characters at least 10 centimetres high on the side of the bin.
VicRoads has developed guidelines for the placement of skips on roadsides. Please view these prior to applying for a permit on the VicRoads website.
We offer 3 types of skip bin permits:
- $776.10 for 1 to 10 bin placements
- $1,029.05 for 11 to 20 bin placements
- $1,191.10 for 21 or more bin placements
All skip bin permits expire on 30 September each year.
To apply for a skip bin permit, download and completed the Skip Bin Permit application form (DOC).
Guidelines for the placement of skips on roadsides is available on the VicRoads website.
You are also required to submit the Skip Bin Placement Advice from (DOC) prior to each skip bin placement.
You can send your completed application form along with your public liability to us by
- Mailing the documents to Merri-bek City Council, Locked Bag 10, Brunswick 3056
- Emailing the documents to the amenity and compliance team at firstname.lastname@example.org
- Visit a Customer Service Centre by finding the address of these locations on our Contact us page
A release fee of $1,114.55 per skip applies for impounded skip bins.
In addition to the release fee, an administration charge of $122.55 applies.
If you do not collect the impounded skip bin within the same day, a storage fee of $42.45 applies per night.
Street trading and special events
If you want to hold an event for your business or organisation on public land, you need a Street Trading and Special Event permit. We issue this permit so that we can encourage responsible trading and entertainment, and support local business owners.
When you require a Street Trading and Special Event permit
The permit enables groups and business owners to:
- Undertake spruiking and promotion of their business to customers, including handing out flyers
- Sell goods and services from public places as one-off promotions
- Conduct special events (including fundraising)
- Conduct activities in a public space where furniture or other items may be placed on public land.
You must apply for a Street Trading and Special Event permit before conducting any of these activities in public places.
If you want to place furniture associated with businesses such as tables and chairs on the footpath, you need a footpath trading permit. You can find out more about these permits on our Other permits for businesses page.
If your street trading or special event involves filming you will need a filming permit. You can find out more about this in the filming permits section on this page.
You may need to apply for an event permit in certain circumstances e.g. large gatherings, ticketed events, area closures. You can find out about event permits on our Planning for an event page.
We issue Street Trading and Special Event permits to manage and facilitate responsible trading and entertainment
Penalties apply if you engage in street trading and special event activities without a valid permit.
This permit is required by the Moreland City Council General Local Law 2018 (DOC 622KB).
The permit fee is $382.65.
We do not require groups or individuals registered with one of the following to obtain a permit. However, details of the event are required to ensure the public space is managed in accordance with safety and public amenity requirements by completing an Activity Notification form (DOC 82KB).
The organisations where we do not require groups or individuals registered with these to obtain a permit are:
- Victorian Electoral Commission
- Australian Electoral Commission
- Consumer Affairs (Co-operatives Public Register, Fundraisers Public Register or Incorporated Associations Public Register)
- Australian charities and Not for Profit Commission
- Victorian Registration and Qualifications Authority
If you do not belong to one of the groups listed above, you need to apply for a Street trading and special events permit.
To apply for a Street Trading permit you need to download our Street Trading and Special Events Permit Application form (DOC 64KB).
You can then send us the completed application form by:
- mailing it to Merri-bek City Council, Locked Bag 10, Brunswick 3056
- emailing the completed form to our amenity and compliance team at email@example.com
- Bringing the completed form to one of our Customer Service Centres, the locations and details of which you can find on our Contact us page
When we receive your application, we will review it.
If we approve your application you will receive an invoice by email.
When we receive your payment, a permit will be emailed to you.
Out of hours work permits
Council recognises there are circumstances where works on private land or building sites may require to be conducted outside of normal permitted times. However, such works must be supported by very strong and reasonable justification as to why they must occur considering the impact on the amenity of surrounding residents, businesses and other members of the public.
Councils permitted working hours:
Except where emergencies or permits allow, building works can only be carried out in accordance with the Environmental Protection Act 2017 and the Moreland City Council General Local Law 2018 between:
- Monday to Friday – 7:00am to 6:00pm
- Saturday – 9:00am to 1:00pm
- Sunday, ANZAC Day, Christmas Day and Good Friday - no work permitted
Any times beyond the permitted hours are referred to as 'Out of Hours'. To do works on private land outside of the permitted hours of works, you must get an Out of Hours Permit.
Applications for Out of Hours Permits are subject to approval and may be refused.
Work outside normal hours is a serious concern to residents. It’s a major source of complaints.
Building works are confined to certain times under the Environmental Protection Act 2017 and Merri-bek City Council General Local Law 2018. We are responsible for enforcing this and other local laws.
Out of Hours Permits are issued at councils discretion. Approval is not guaranteed.
You can only apply to do works out of hours for the following reasons:
- works cannot be done in normal hours
- over-sized vehicle loads cannot be transported during normal hours
- the nature of the work makes it more desirable outside normal hours
- you can demonstrate the works will not have an unreasonable impact on local amenity.
- Application received with more than 4 working days notice $358.25
- Application received with less than 4 working days notice $626.90
- Residents and businesses within 100m should be notified of the out of hours works. This should include Company Name and after hours Contact Name and Phone Number.
- You should provide 7 days written notification to surrounding residents.
Apply by email
- Complete the Out of Hours Permit Application Form (1MB, WORD).
- Attaching the required documents to your application
- Emailing your completed application and email to firstname.lastname@example.org for our Amenity and Compliance team to review
- An invoice will then be emailed to you for your payment, if your permit is approved.
Your application will be assessed, and the outcome will be emailed to you. Applications are usually processed within 10 business days. More complex applications may take longer.
Once the decision has been made you will be notified by email. If approved, an invoice will be issued to you.
If you have an Out of Hours permit, you must adhere to the permit conditions.
Permits can be revoked if the works are found to breach the permit conditions.
If an officer determines there has been a breach:
- you will have to cease works
- your permit will be revoked
- you may receive a fine
Footpath trading permit
Businesses in Merri-bek require a permit to place items on a footpath. You can find out more about footpath trading permits on our Other permits for businesses page.
Real estate signage
Real estate agents operating in Merri-bek need a Real Estate Agent Signage permit to temporarily place any board or signage, including 'open for inspection' and 'auction this day' signs, on public land, such as a footpath, nature strip or park. You can find out more about real estate signage permits on our Other permits for businesses page.
Pay a local laws invoice
You can pay a local laws invoice by Visa or MasterCard on our eServices website. You will need the 'Application number' located on your invoice in order to pay.
You can register as a user on our eServices website. This allows you to sign in to eServices and keep track of requests and applications on any device in the My Accounts area. You also won't need to re-enter your personal information for applications.
You can pay your renewal fee with a Visa or MasterCard over the phone 24 hours a day using Council's secure automated system.
To make this payment you need to:
- Phone 9240 1111 and press 1 to make a payment. Then press 7 to pay 'licencing tax invoices' and follow the voice prompts.
- Provide the ‘Application number' located on your invoice or renewal notice and your Visa or MasterCard details.
To pay your invoice by post you need to:
- Separate the payment slip at the bottom of your invoice or renewal notice and mail it with your cheque or money order to Merri-bek City Council, Locked Bag 10, Brunswick 3056, before the due date.
- Make the cheque or money order payable to ‘Merri-bek City Council’ and cross it 'Not negotiable'. Do not include cash in the mail.
We do not provide a receipt for payments received by mail. Please keep the top section of the notice for your records.
You can pay your business renewal fee in person by bringing your notice to one of our Council Customer Service Centres before the due date. The locations of these centres are on our Contact us page.
You can pay by Visa or MasterCard, EFTPOS, cheque, money order and cash. The minimum payment for all card transactions is $10 and there is no cash out facility.
Moreland City Council changed its name to Merri-bek City Council on 26 September 2022. Moreland City Council General Local Law 2018 is still valid until a new Local Law is made.