Push for timely re­ward

Breach drop cues call for longer nightspot hours

Weekend Gold Coast Bulletin - - NEWS - SALLY COATES sally.coates@news.com.au

A PROM­I­NENT hos­pi­tal­ity fig­ure says trad­ing hours should be ex­tended to re­ward the in­dus­try for a drop in liquor li­cence breaches.

While the Gold Coast av­er­aged 441 liquor li­cence breaches in the past three years, Surfers Par­adise has had nearly a 30 per cent de­crease.

Surfers Par­adise Li­censed Venue As­so­ci­a­tion pres­i­dent Tim Martin at­trib­uted the drop to the grow­ing suc­cess of ID scan­ners and said trad­ing hours should be ex­tended as a re­ward.

“The scan­ners are def­i­nitely work­ing, in con­junc­tion with a few other things,” he said.

“Now we’ve tight­ened ev­ery­thing up ... the fines in­crease, the in­tox­i­ca­tions de­crease ... we can start lob­by­ing the gov­ern­ment for an­other hour of trade as a trade-off.

“Most of the vi­o­lence and drama comes from small per­cent­age of people and the ID scan­ners have taught them a les­son: If they mess up they can’t go out.”

ID scan­ners were in­tro­duced by the State gov­ern­ment on July 1 last year.

The scan­ners are linked to a cen­tral data­base that raises a flag if some­one try­ing to en­ter a venue has been banned else­where in Queens­land.

Surfers Par­adise’s liquor li­cence breaches dropped from around 90 in 2015 and 2016 to 64 in 2017.

Broad­beach breaches were 68, 57 and 63 dur­ing the three years re­spec­tively.

At­tor­ney-Gen­eral Yvette D’Ath said while she agreed that the scan­ners had been a suc­cess, no changes in trad­ing would take place un­til a re­view.

“I agree with Tim that ID scan­ners are mak­ing our li­censed venues in Safe Night Precincts safer,” she said.

“An in­de­pen­dent com­pre­hen­sive eval­u­a­tion of the strat­egy is now un­der way, due to re­port back later this year.

“In the mean­time, we will con­tinue to work with in­dus­try to en­sure the most ef­fec­tive mea­sures to keep people safe.”

Li­cence breaches out­side the Surfers Par­adise and Broad­beach precincts have re­mained in the hun­dreds dur­ing the past three years as an in­creas­ing num­ber of li­censed venues open, from Coolangatta to Sanc­tu­ary Cove.

Mr Martin said that was un­der­stand­able as venues found their feet, but said that if the pat­tern con­tin­ued, ac­tion would need to be taken.

“As new ar­eas de­velop there’s al­ways go­ing to be teething prob­lems,” he said.

“With our Safe Night precincts at Surfers and Broad­beach, we’re reg­u­lated, there’s lots of po­lice.

“We need to spread the re­sources if it be­comes a prob­lem in other ar­eas.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.