Liquor Licensing

In NSW Clubs liquor licensing provisions are contained in the Liquor Act 2007. A club with a club liquor licence is referred to as a ‘registered club’ in the law. The Registered Clubs Act 1976 focuses on club management and governance issues. Most clubs that existed as at 30 June 2008 have unrestricted trading hours. Newly licensed registered clubs are subject to a community impact statement to ensure local stakeholders can have their say in the liquor licensing process. Newly licensed registered clubs are subject to the standard trading period i.e. 5am to midnight Monday to Saturday, and 10am to 10pm on Sunday. Applications for extended trading hours are subject to a community impact statement.

While most liquor licences are held by individuals, the liquor laws also enable a licence to be held by a corporation. Maximum court penalties of $5,500 apply where premises are operated unlawfully without an approved manager. There are two requirements for the appointment of managers to venues that hold corporate licences:-

  1. Potential manager must apply for approval ie. Clubs are required to appoint managers under corporate licence. A person must apply for approval from the Independent Liquor and Gaming Authority to be a manager of licensed premises which holds a corporate licence – at which time their probity is assessed.  As part of this application, the proposed manager must provide a copy of the National Police Certificate (see below for more info), details of their responsible service of alcohol (RSA) qualification and industry experience (see more info below) in order for the application to be assessed.The cost of the application is $50.
    Applicants seeking approval to be an approved manager can now apply online via the NSW Government Licence website and complete the application online. This is quicker and easier than downloading and completing a PDF form from the OLGR website. Get organised before you apply to be an approved manager, a National Police Certificate must be done first before applying to be an approved manager.To obtain a National Police Certificate, apply online via the www.police.nsw.gov.auwebsite and click on the Criminal Records section on the homepage.Once you have completed the application online, you should print it out along with the confirmation details page and take these to your nearest police station with 3 acceptable forms of identification and pay the application fee ($52).   You can also visit your local police station and complete a National Criminal History Record Check application form (P799), present 3 of the acceptable identity documents and pay the fee.   How to assess your industry experience for your approved manager application http://www.olgr.nsw.gov.au/liquor_profile_calc.asp
  2. Notification of managerial appointment
    Once approval has been obtained, only then can a person seek appointment as a manager for a particular venue with a corporate licence.
    Under liquor laws, when appointing an approved manager, a venue with a corporate licence must lodge an appointment of manager notice with the Independent Liquor and Gaming Authority to keep them informed. By law this must be lodged within 28 days.In the case of a registered club that has two or more premises, an approved manager must be appointed at each of those premises where the club’s secretary is not present. While an approved manager must be appointed by a club within two months, the law allows a person to act as an approved manager, pending an application being lodged with the Authority for the person to be an approved manager.However, the approved manager requirement does not apply where a club has only two premises and the main premises are in a metropolitan area and  both premises are located within 10 kilometres of each other,  or the main premises are outside a metropolitan area and both premises are located within 50 kilometres of each other. A metropolitan area includes Sydney, Newcastle and Wollongong.

Limited License

Smaller clubs can obtain  a limited license which allows for regular club events with some restircitions. The attached file for SLSC is very specific around the requirements for SLS but is also worthwhlie indicator of the reuqirements for your club  SLSC NSW Fact sheet

Under a limited licence:

  • Clubs can sell alcohol at club functions that have been approved by the Casino, Liquor and Gaming Control Authority
  • up to 52 club functions can be approved for each 12-month period
  • alcohol can be sold for consumption on the club’s premises during a function
  • trading hours are determined by the Authority for each approved function (but alcohol cannot be sold between 3am and 10am generally).
  • the social function must be organised by the club
  • the social function must be held on a Saturday, Sunday or public holiday (not Christmas Day)
  • the social function must be held in connection with, or following, an activity associated with the conduct or administration of the club
  • at least 14 days notice must be given to the Authority, the local police and the local council (one notice can cover multiple functions)
  • the social function must be held on the club’s premises (if the club has several premises, it can only be held on its principal premises)
  • only members of the club and their guests can attend
  • the licensee must keep a register on the premises that includes details of the function as required by the Authority
  • the social function must have been approved by a resolution recorded in the records of the governing body of the club
  • food of a nature and quantity consistent with the responsible sale, supply and service of alcohol must be available

Community Impact Statement (CIS)

When is a CIS required?

A CIS is prepared by a potential applicant for a liquor licence or a licence-related authorisation and is a summary of consultation between the applicant and the local community about any issues and concerns with a proposed application.   Different types of liquor licence applications require different types of CIS. There are two types of CIS – category A and category B.   The key difference between a category A and category B CIS is in relation to the stakeholders required to be notified. More stakeholders must be consulted when preparing a category B CIS. A CIS is required for the following applications.

A category A CIS is required if the application is for:  a packaged liquor licence limited to the sale or supply of alcohol by taking orders over the telephone, fax, mail order or through a website;  the removal of the above licence to other premises;  an extended trading authorisation for an on-premises licence if the authorisation will allow the sale of liquor on a Sunday between 5am and 10am or between 10pm and midnight (not including sales to the residents of the licensed premises and their guests);  a primary service authorisation under section 24(3) of the Liquor Act – eg. where a restaurant wants to sell liquor without meals; and any other application for which the Authority requires a category A CIS on a caseby- case basis – such as where the Authority considers there may be potential for community impact associated with a new licensed premises or a change to an existing premises.

Applicants will be notified by the Authority if this is required.   A category B CIS is required if the application is for:  a hotel licence;  a club licence;  a packaged liquor licence (other than a licence limited to the sale or supply of liquor by taking orders over the telephone, facsimile, mail order or through an internet site);  an on-premises licence for a public entertainment venue other than a cinema or a theatre;  an extended trading authorisation for each of the above licences;  an application to remove each of the above licences to other premises;  an extended trading authorisation for an On-premises licence if the authorisation will allow the sale of liquor at any time between midnight and 5am;  an extended trading authorisation for a Producer/wholesaler licence if the authorisation will allow the sale of liquor by retail between midnight and 5am (not including sales to the residents of the licensed premises and their guests); and any other application for which the Authority requires a category B CIS on a case by case basis – such as where the Authority considers there may be potential for community impact associated with a new licensed premises or a change to an existing premises. Applicants will be notified by the Authority if this is required.

What is a CIS?

The CIS allows the Casino, Liquor & Gaming Control Authority to be aware of the impact that granting an application will have on the local community. It does this by ensuring the potential applicant consults with the local community before deciding to go ahead with making an application.   A CIS must be included with the papers lodged with the Authority when a liquor licence or licence-related authorisation application is made.   Where a CIS is required, the Authority cannot grant a licence, authorisation or approval unless it is satisfied that the overall social impact will not be detrimental to the well-being of the local or broader community.   Why is a CIS important?   The CIS helps to ensure the Authority is aware of the views of the local community. It allows the Authority to gauge the results of any discussions between the applicant and stakeholders about the issues and concerns they may have about an application.

The CIS process helps the potential applicant to determine if an adverse impact is likely. The process will inform the potential applicant of the views of the community including the local council, police and any relevant special interest groups before making any further commitment to their proposal. With this information the potential applicant can make a well informed decision whether to go ahead, modify or withdraw the proposal.   If deciding to go ahead with the proposal, potential applicants can identify ways in which their application can be modified to reduce negative impacts if necessary. Early consultation also allows the community to be informed of the proposal, helping to reduce adverse community reaction when submissions to the Authority are invited after the application is lodged.   A CIS received by the Authority will be placed on public display before an application is determined. It will be displayed on the application noticeboard on the OLGR website www.olgr.nsw.gov.au

Persons or organisations that are notified of a proposal will also be notified of the application if the proposal goes ahead. They will be able to view the CIS and make submissions directly to the Authority.   Essential CIS preparation tips

The CIS must be carefully prepared and be complete.

Assistance from a consultant or a lawyer is not required. However, the applicant can choose to engage professional assistance. For more complex or contentious applications, or where there are many issues or concerns, professional assistance may be useful to ensure all stakeholders have been properly consulted.   A poorly prepared or incomplete CIS may not be accepted. If the CIS is unsatisfactory, the Authority can require further action to be undertaken and a revised CIS may need to be prepared.   A CIS could be inadequate if: all relevant stakeholders have not been consulted;  the CIS fails to describe how the consultation was undertaken; and the CIS does not include discussion on issues raised by stakeholders and how any concerns or objections have been addressed by the applicant.

It is important to take into consideration the following questions when reviewing stakeholder responses to a proposal:  What were the main issues raised by stakeholders?  What were the negative responses to the proposal? What were the positive responses to the proposal? What issues needed further discussion? How strongly did stakeholders feel about these issues? Were there similar recurring issues raised by different stakeholders? Have any ongoing relationships been established between the applicant and the local community which may help resolve future issues as they arise? Have any ideas been developed as a result of the consultation and are there any changes to be made to the proposed application as a result of the stakeholder feedback?

Stakeholder concerns and benefits

As the Authority cannot grant a licence, authorisation or approval unless it is satisfied that the overall social impact will not be detrimental to the well-being of the local or broader community, it is important that any issues and concerns raised in consultation are discussed with stakeholders and resolved before the application is lodged wherever possible.   Stakeholders may have concerns in relation to: undue disturbance to the neighbourhood of the proposed licensed premises caused by the operation of the premises and/or the conduct of patrons; alcohol-related anti-social behaviour or crime; alcohol-related hospitalisations and health problems; increases in pedestrian and motor traffic numbers; drink driving and drink walking; increase in domestic violence associated with alcohol consumption; and litter and other pollution associated with the operation of the premises.

Some stakeholder benefits may include: increased social and recreational opportunities; increased opportunities for live music and other artists; and increased employment and economic activity.

CIS must show how stakeholder concerns have been resolved and describe any changes that have been made to the proposal as a result of stakeholder discussions.   If resolution could not be reached, the CIS must note the issues raised and include a brief description of the attempts that were made to resolve these concerns.   It is important to ensure all information provided in the CIS accurately reflects stakeholder responses as the statement will be placed on public display.

 

 

    Share

Leave a Comment