Licensed venues and patrons in the Sydney CBD and Kings Cross precincts are reminded that 1.30am lockouts and 3am last drinks come into effect from next Monday, Minister for Hospitality, George Souris, said.
Mr Souris said 24 February is the start date for a range of measures – including a State wide ban on the sale of takeaway alcohol after 10pm – as part of the NSW Government’s crackdown on drug and alcohol-fuelled violence.
“The introduction of these measures should come as no surprise as we have been rolling out an information and awareness campaign including notifying affected licensees, radio and newspaper advertisements, briefings for industry peak bodies and liquor accords, and flyers and signage for venues, Mr Souris said.
“We expect full cooperation from venues and patrons as it is in everybody’s best interest that we improve the safety and amenity of the CBD and prevent senseless acts of violence.
“Patrons must be inside a licensed venue by 1.30am or they won’t be permitted entry. And alcohol service will cease at 3am, however, patrons will be permitted to stay on the premises until closing time as venues can provide non-alcoholic beverages, food and entertainment.”
Mr Souris said the full range of legislative measures coming into effect on the morning of February 24 includes:
· Creation of the new Sydney CBD Entertainment Precinct stretching from parts of Surry Hills and Darlinghurst in the south to The Rocks in the north and from Kings Cross in the east to Cockle Bay;
· 1.30am lockouts and 3am cease service of alcohol at hotels, registered clubs, nightclubs and licensed karaoke bars across the Sydney CBD Entertainment and Kings Cross precincts. Small bars with a maximum patron capacity of 60 people, most restaurants and tourism accommodation establishments are exempt;
· Introduction of 48 hour temporary banning orders for troublemakers in the Sydney CBD Entertainment Precinct;
· A ban on takeaway alcohol sales after 10pm across NSW. This applies to bottle shops as well as hotels and clubs that are authorised to sell takeaway alcohol either from a designated area or from across the bar;
· A two year freeze on new liquor licences and approvals for existing licences across the Sydney CBD Entertainment Precinct; and
· Powers to revoke competency cards and disqualify bar staff in the Sydney CBD Entertainment Precinct for up to 12 months if they are caught breaching responsible service of alcohol requirements.
“Police and the Office of Liquor, Gaming and Racing will be targeting the peak trading periods with compliance and enforcement operations,” Mr Souris said.
“Licensees are warned that failure to comply with conditions can result in fines of up to $11,000 and/or imprisonment of up to 12 months as well as strikes under the NSW Government’s Three Strikes disciplinary scheme.”