South Australia passes liquor licensing reforms

15 November, 2017 by Andy Young

The South Australian Parliament has passed the first major changes to the state’s liquor licensing system in nearly two decades.

The State Government welcomed the changes, saying that the pave the way for a simpler, more effective licensing system. The changes have also seen tougher penalties for the secondary supply of alcohol to minors, with the maximum penalty now $10,000.

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A minor who consumes or has possession of alcohol in contravention of the new laws will also face a maximum penalty of $2,500.

The other key changes to the system include:

New licensing categories, aimed at simplifying the process for venues and events to apply for a licence

Cutting red tape for new and existing licensees

Removing outdated restrictions on the sale of liquor on Sundays, Christmas Day, Good Friday, New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day

Abolishing the anti-competitive ‘needs test’

The reforms will be implemented in phases, with consultation to take place with industry on some key elements of the reform prior to their implementation.

South Australia’s Consumer and Business Services Minister John Rau, welcomed the changes as a step forward for the state’s liquor laws.

“These changes help modernise our licensing regime and better reflect both community expectations and changes to the sector over the past two decades,” Minister Rau said.

“By streamlining our application processes and licenses, we are supporting and encouraging new businesses helping to contribute to Adelaide’s vibrant nightlife. We’re maintaining a strong level of regulation, to ensure public safety and a safe drinking culture.”