Country balls get insurance break

By HUGH KEARNEY

THE Tweed country hall dance circuit appears to be safe after receiving some rare good insurance news.

The Daily News last week revealed the future of the popular dance series, now in its 34th year, was in jeopardy with the Tweed Combined Country Halls Association (TCCHA) having difficulty finding the funds to pay a $1200 volunteers liability insurance bill.

TCCHA treasurer Ron Lever said last week the mounting insurance bill could have made the old-time dances a thing of the past within two years unless a solution was found.

On Friday, in response to the story, the Daily News received a letter from Tweed MP Neville Newell outlining provisions of the Civil Liability Amendment (Personal Responsibility) Act, 2002, which prevents volunteers from being sued.

Mr Newell said as long as the volunteers were from an incorporated community organisation, doing community work in good faith, the Act would protect them from personal civil liability.

Mr Lever yesterday contacted Mr Newell's office to get more details of the Act, and was provided with added material which he took to his legal counsel for an expert opinion.

"He says it looks fine so it appears we are covered after all," an astonished and relieved Mr Lever said.

"So, credit where credit's due. We thank Mr Newell very much for this information. The only thing I'm cranky about now is the insurance company taking our money the past two years when it seems we didn't have to pay. I wonder how many other community organisations are in the same boat?"



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