New restrictions for CBD licensed venues

The NSW Government last week announced the Sydney Plan of Management, detailing new measures to be implemented in the Sydney CBD Entertainment Precinct. Troy Grant, Minister for Hospitality, Gaming and Racing, said “the Plan of Management was designed by NSW Government agencies in collaboration with the City of Sydney and aims to reduce alcohol harm in and around the precinct’s 1,300 licensed venues”.

The new measures come in to effect from July 18th, and include additional restrictions imposed on licensed venues, enhancements to policing and surveillance within the precinct as well as precinct wide implementation of pre-pay taxi fares. Venues will be required to adhere to the following new rules:

  • After midnight, no shots, shooters, bombs, doubles, or ready to drink beverages (RTDs) with more than 5% alcohol content and a limit of four alcoholic drinks per patron per order. Genuine cocktails will not be affected.
  • After 2am, drink sales limited to two per patron per order to prevent stockpiling ahead of the 3am cease alcohol service.
    Patrons wearing outlaw motorcycle gang colours banned from venues.
  • Anyone seen drinking alcohol on approach to a venue to be refused entry.
  • Venues restricted from promoting high risk drinks including heavily discounted alcohol designed to be consumed rapidly. This includes high risk promotions using drink cards, flyers, vouchers, social media, websites, print media or spruiking.
  • Venues required to preserve crime scenes according to NSW Police guidelines to ensure violent incidents can be investigated and offenders prosecuted.
  • Venues required to maintain incident registers at all times to record incidents involving violence and anti-social behaviour.
    From October, all staff serving alcohol and security guards must hold responsible service of alcohol (RSA) competency cards or valid interim certificates to ensure up-to-date training.
  • Licensed ‘party boat’ vessels banned from picking up or dropping off patrons in the CBD after midnight.
  • Glass drinking vessels banned after midnight in venues designated by the Secretary of NSW Trade & Investment due to a risk of violence.
  • From October, RSA Marshals must be employed during high risk trading periods in venues designated by the Secretary of NSW Trade & Investment due to a risk of violence.

The full announcement is available from the OLGR website.

The new measures highlight the importance of active liquor accords. By encouraging communication and collaboration between venues, accords promote ethical, best practice operation by all venues and support the best interests of the community. Successful accords remove the need for legislative intervention and help maintain a more successful, profitable environment for licensees.

Licensees should contact their local liquor accord for more information on membership and initiatives. A list of NSW liquor accords is available from the OLGR website.

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