The NSW Government has extended the deadline for community feedback on the second stage of its 24-hour economy liquor law reforms, which propose a host of changes to kick start Sydney’s night time economy post COVID-19 and beyond.

Initially scheduled to close on Sunday, 14 June interested parties now have until Sunday, 28 June to submit feedback.

The Government says the aims of the draft Liquor Amendment (24-hour Economy) Bill 2020 is to create a vibrant and safe 24-hour economy, with risk-based liquor laws that support business.

Minister for Customer Service Victor Dominello and Minister for Jobs, Investment, Tourism and Western Sydney Stuart Ayres said the proposals follow on from the Government’s response to NSW Parliament’s Joint Select Committee on Sydney’s night time economy.

“The proposals will help boost the state’s night time economy by removing outdated laws, simplifying licensing processes and creating a new incentives and sanctions system that rewards licence holders with a clear record,” Dominello said.

“We want pubs, bars and hotels to hit the ground running on the other side, but we are mindful of how rules such as social distancing may need to be accommodated.”

Ayres said that while the hospitality sector is a significant employer and lifeblood for many communities, it has been hugely impacted by COVID-19.

“COVID-19 has hit the hospitality industry hard and fast. We recognise the importance of streamlining the previously complicated legislation to make it easier for industry to get back on their feet as social distancing restrictions ease,” Ayres said.

“There is now clearly a light at the end of the tunnel for our hospitality sector and this will give them hope for the future.”

Key proposals include:

  • A new incentives and sanctions system with ongoing fee discounts for licensed venues that maintain a clear record;
  • Removal of outdated live music restrictions;
  • Allow small bars to offer more family friendly services to customers, by permitting minors in certain circumstances;
  • Reducing red tape by aligning liquor licensing and planning processes; and
  • Enhancing same day alcohol delivery regulations.

Feedback must be submitted by 28 June on the NSW Customer Service website.

A Bill is expected to be introduced to Parliament in the second half of 2020.

Andy Young

Andy joined Intermedia as Editor of TheShout in 2015, writing news on a daily basis and also writing features for National Liquor News. Now Managing Editor of both TheShout and Bars and Clubs.

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