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More licensed venues to open past midnight


Amy Remeikis

The government moratorium on late-night trading hours is due be lifted at the end of the month.

The government moratorium on late-night trading hours is due be lifted at the end of the month. Photo: Andrew Quilty

More pubs, as well as RSLs and suburban community clubs, may be able to apply to trade past midnight with the moratorium on trading hours due to be lifted at the end of the month.

The Legal Affairs and Community Safety parliamentary committee has approved the Safe Night Out legislation and Attorney-General Jarrod Bleijie said he envisioned an end to the moratorium, which was put in place by the Labor government in September 2009.

It means that more licensees will be soon be able to apply to trade past midnight.

“Once the moratorium lifts, they will then apply for new licences under the normal provisions, as you would expect with any liquor licences,” Mr Bleijie said.

“...Part of the government’s strategy for the safe night out was of course listening and consultation, so the new strategy will be in place by the time the moratorium ends, and then any trader that wants to trade past midnight will go through the normal licensing provision as applied at the time and I suspect traders will re-apply for those extended trading hours, if they so wish, but it will be guided under the new laws.”

The legistlation, a government resposne to alcohol-fuelled violence, was endorsed by the parliamentary committee.

But the comittee asked for some clarifications on issues such as how many health professionals would be available at any one time in the government’s "sober safe centres", which are also referred to as "drunk tanks".

It also asked for clarification on the provisions relating to the drug and alcohol assessment and referral courses, which will be part of bail conditions, for those charged over alcholo-fuelled violence in regional and rural communities.

Mr Bleijie said he would examine the committee's report, but did not commit to accepting any of the recommendations.

“We haven’t debated the laws in parliament yet, but as the case has been with all of this, we have listened,” he said.

“We have listened along the way, we have adjusted the plan, after listening to Queenslanders, so I will have a look at the report now, before we debate it.”

That debate is expected to take place in next week’s parliamentary sitting, to give the laws time to be passed before the end of the moratorium.

But Labor, which has advocated a lock-out and "last drinks" policy, said the government was not going far enough.

Shadow attorney-general Yvette D’Ath said her party’s policy was made “on the basis of expert advice”.

“If you want to tackle alcohol fuelled violence, you must tackle trading hours,” she said.

“You can’t say that you are going to tackle alcohol-fuelled violence at the same time as lifting the moratorium, which is what the Newman government has said they will do and allow trading beyond 3am.

“At the end of the day, if people have not had enough to drink by 3am, when have they had enough?”

The government has stood by its policy, with Mr Newman saying he was determined not to punish the majority of entertainment district dwellers for the “bad behaviour” of a few.

24 comments so far

  • The current LNP government has no intetinal fortitude and will continue to pander to the pubs and clubs lobby.

    The Gumpster
    The Gap Q
    Date and time
    August 20, 2014, 7:25AM
    • The powerful alcohol lobby wins again. All the bellicose nonsense from this government about alcohol related violence is responded to (in part i'll grant) by letting more pubs and clubs open later.

      I have no evidence that it will make any difference to violence, and in fact as I drink and go out sometimes it won't bother me, it's just the breathtaking hypocrisy and the obvious brown nosing to the alcohol industry who I am sure made some generous donations.

      People's Democratic Republic of QLD
      Date and time
      August 20, 2014, 7:32AM
      • No evidence?? Take a look at the Newcastle project for all the evidence.

        Date and time
        August 20, 2014, 8:14AM
      • I did not say there was no evidence, I was eluding to the fact that I had not researched my opinion before posting. Unlike some prominent politicians I prefer reputable peer reviewed sources over Wikipedia, and as the this gov ignores advice and research anyway, I could not be bothered looking for it myself.

        Date and time
        August 20, 2014, 9:18AM
      • Please stop parroting the line of "look at Newcastle". There is no comparison between a city the size of Newcastle with only one real club/pub precinct and Brisbane (with multiple areas). Google "Melbourne lockout" and you will find a report on why it failed there. It all comes down to two things in Qld: lack of transport options to get home and the increasingly cheaper prices from the likes of Dan Murphy's, ie preloading.

        Date and time
        August 20, 2014, 11:27AM
    • I see the all important licensing hours have won through again

      Date and time
      August 20, 2014, 7:45AM
      • When does Aldi get a liquor license? or is that reserved for Coles and Woolworth only?

        Varsity Lakes
        Date and time
        August 20, 2014, 7:48AM
        • Here in Qld, bottleshops need to be attached to a licenced venue, hence why Coles and Woolworths own the vast majority of pubs in Queensland (if it has a Liquorland, it's Coles-owned, if it has a BWS or Dan Murphys, it's Woolworths-owned). While this is in place, Aldi would have to buy up some pubs and set up standalone stores to sell liquor.

          The Realistic
          Date and time
          August 20, 2014, 8:48AM
        • In NSW Aldi in my local store sells alcohol

          Date and time
          August 20, 2014, 11:26AM
        • In NSW! Qld is a century behind!
          And to the Realist, not all bottle shops are connected to a pub and why can't we be like VIC and NSW? Only because we re backwards?

          Varsity Lakes
          Date and time
          August 20, 2014, 11:49AM

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