Liquor-licensing system aims to go paperless
The new-look Liquor Licensing Authority will work with the drinks trade to streamline the process and move towards a paperless system.
Kathy Lynn Simmons, the Attorney-General and Minister of Legal Affairs, said the new LLA started work in May but had already started to examine ways to make the system more efficient.
Ms Simmons told the Senate: “Authority members have already started to contemplate further recommendations to amend the Act to assist licence holders.
“Accordingly, the authority wishes to host meetings to obtain further feedback from various industry stakeholders.
“It also intends to discuss the current scope of the 2019 amendments and hopes to host the meetings over the next few months.
“It is also intended to have meetings with the holders of specific licences, promoters and special event co-ordinators to discuss the new amendments.”
Ms Simmons added: “These meetings will also provide an opportunity for the authority to obtain feedback and recommendations with respect to making further improvements to the Act.”
The Attorney-General said efforts had started to make the liquor licencing process paperless.
Ms Simmons added: “Modernisation will not only make it easier to apply for licences, but also to collect and collate data to improve efficiency.”
She said since the new LLA started work in May, it had received 66 applications for occasional liquor licences — 17 of which were to be held that month.
Ms Simmons said: “I am pleased to report that all of those 17 applications were processed and approved in a timely manner.
“In fact, approval was granted well in advance of each, even with the exception of one application that was withdrawn.”
She added that five applications had been made for the new special-event licence, but that no applications had been received for the new catering permits and itinerant restaurant licences.
Ms Simmons said: “It is estimated that the low application numbers for these new licences is due to their novelty.
“Accordingly, demand for them is anticipated to increase as the public becomes more aware of their availability.”
The members of the LLA are chairman Marc Daniels, deputy chairwoman Kendaree Burgess, Clyde Darrell, Kevin Smith, Anthony Santucci, Christopher Famous and Tanya Esdaille.