Friday 13 December, 2013
The NSW Government will consider a raft of recommendations following the release today of the independent report into the five-year statutory review of the State's liquor laws, Minister for Hospitality, George Souris, said.
Mr Souris said the Government will consider the report’s 91 recommendations which address such matters as access to the liquor licensing system for local communities; promoting efficient, transparent, effective and fair decision making and strengthening regulatory tools to reduce alcohol-related harm.
"As there are many legislative proposals involved across portfolios, the Government’s response to the report will be announced in the first half of 2014," Mr Souris said.
He said the review of the Liquor Act 2007 and the Gaming and Liquor Administration Act 2007 confirmed that while alcohol-related violence is trending down, there are a range of areas where improvements may be considered.
"The Government will consider all the recommendations in the report and consult further in relation to the practicality of how they might work and whether they can be improved," Mr Souris said.
"We agree that our liquor laws need to facilitate access to the liquor and gaming regulatory systems by stakeholders and promote efficiency, transparency, effectiveness and fairness in decision making.
"The liquor laws introduced in 2008 were the biggest overhaul of the State’s liquor licensing system in more than a quarter of a century.
"The independent review by Michael Foggo, a former Commissioner of the Office of Liquor, Gaming & Racing, is the first time they have been comprehensively assessed to ensure they remain effective and meet community expectations.
"The review involved widespread consultation including, the release of an explanatory paper, information sessions with key stakeholders and a call for public comment, resulting in 106 submissions from the community, government agencies, local councils, industry and the health sector."
Recommendations of the report include:
Mr Souris said the report notes significant reductions in alcohol-related harm.
"The report states that between 2008 and 2012 there has been significant reductions in violent incidents on licensed premises (-28%); alcohol-related assaults on police (- 35%); alcohol-related domestic assaults (-12%); alcohol-related non-domestic assaults (-28%); and hospital emergency department attendance rates for acute alcohol problems (-9%).
"I would like to thank everyone who made submissions for their contributions to this review."