by adelemorris on 16 January, 2015
Today I attended the annual Local Government Association licensing conference. It was interesting to hear how some authorities are managing the impact of their night time economy on local residents by using new powers introduced by the Coalition Government. Councils are now able to charge a levy on premises which are open late, and they can use the money towards extra policing, enforcement officers or whatever they think best to address any local licensing issues. Sadly, Southwark does not seem interested in pursuing this seriously – I have been asking them about this ever since the legislation was introduced but have been fobbed off every time.
I am, however, please that the latest licensing consultation document here asks people to comment on whether we should have a table of suggested closing times depending on where premises are located. I first raised this issue at a Council Assembly meeting last year, having seen that Lambeth Council were already considering such a move. Please respond to this consultation if you feel that this would be an appropriate policy to introduce.
Lastly, it was good to hear that Public Health England are keen to feed alcohol related health data in to local authorities to assist them to curb the over saturation of licenced premises in problem areas. I look forward to seeing how that will work in practice.
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