Posted: Tuesday, 13 July 2010 @ 14:31
The new government is moving ahead rapidly with consultations in a number of areas effecting the licensed trade. It is rumoured that the fast track review of the licensing laws will result in measures being introduced in parliament in the autumn.
And let us not forget the promise to get rid of red tape where possible. The Your Freedom initiative is gathering suggestions via its website www.yourfreedom.hmg.gov.uk So now is the time to put forward suggestions. My pet hate is the Designated Premises Supervisor. It was a last minute concession to the Police in the new Act of 2003 and has simply added to both the cost and confusion of licensing. The Licensing Act does not identify any roles or duties for the DPS and yet the government through the Guidance, and the Police, have been inventing roles for the past 7 years. With a Premises Licence holder and Personal Licence Holders, why add to the red tape with a DPS? What do you think?
It will be very interesting to see what the government come up with to "strengthen" the licensing laws. In my opinion the existing laws have more that sufficient strength. There are a host of different ways the authorities can enforce the law, with very stringent penalties for breach. The problem has been the confusion caused by the multitude of enforcement measures, and more critically the lack of funding for the enforcement agencies. I hope that the new government does not follow the error of the last government in believing that all problems will be solved simply by pasing new laws. I will let you know my thoughts and feelings on what they propose immediately they put forward their ideas.
Licensing Law Specialist
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