Consideration of draft revised Statement of Licensing Policy and refer the final approved Policy to Full Council for adoption ( Report of the Executive Manager Public Protection is enclosed).
Consideration was given to the report of the Executive Public Protection Manager which included a draft revised Statement of Licensing Policy for comment by the Committee, prior to its adoption by full Council.
South Holland District Council is the Licensing Authority under the provisions of the Licensing Act 2003 for the retail sale of alcohol, the supply of alcohol by or on behalf of a club, the provision of regulated entertainment and the provision of late night refreshment within the district.
Section 5 of the Licensing Act 2003 required the Licensing Authority to prepare and publish a statement of its Licensing Policy at least every five years. The Policy should also be kept under review by the Licensing Authority, and revisions made as considered appropriate. In order to comply with the legislative requirements, the current Statement of Licensing Policy had to be reviewed, revised and published by 7 January 2016. The current Statement of Licensing Policy and the draft revised Licensing Policy were attached to the report at Appendix A and B respectively.
A review of the current statement of Licensing Policy had been completed by the Interim Licensing and Business Support Manager, and this had been consulted on with a required list of persons, as detailed in Section 5(3) of the Licensing Act 2003. A list of consultees was appended to the report at Appendix C.
The Committee was advised that the Home Office had issued guidance in October 2015 on the deregulation of the licensable activity of late night refreshments. A decision to make an exemption for late night refreshment was one that would require inclusion in the statement of Licensing Policy, and be subject to the statutory consultation process. Therefore, in addition to reviewing the draft Licensing Policy, the Committee was asked to also consider whether it wished to make changes with regard to exemptions for late night refreshment.
Councillors considered the information provided, and the following suggested changes were made, in relation to the re-drafted Licensing Policy Statement:
· Reference was made throughout the document to a number of guidance notes and practices that licensees should adopt. The Safer Spalding Good Practice Code for Premises however was not referred to at all, and it should be.
· Section 1.1 - Reference was made to updated census figures however, the size of the area was referred to in square kilometres/miles rather than hectares, as used in the previous Policy. The Interim Licensing and Business Support Manager advised that this was the format that the information had been available in.
· Page numbering was incorrect on the page where Section 4 was laid out.
· Section 5.8, third bullet point – What was meant by ‘levels of door supervision’? It was felt that the wording was too loose and that expectations should be clarified.
· Section 5.17 – ninth bullet point, incorrect spelling. Change from ‘citing’ to ‘siting’.
· Individual points should be numbered rather than using bullet points – this would make them easier to refer to.
· Section 5.19 – ‘When deciding whether to limit access to children or not, the Licensing Authority will judge each application on its own individual merits’ – In response to Councillors questioning whether this was a question for the Licensing Authority, the Interim Licensing and Business Support Manager clarified that this point related to limiting children’s access to certain events, e.g. access to a show that had adult content.
· Section 5.25 – It was felt that reference to adult staff was too limiting. It was agreed that ‘adult staff’ should be changed to ‘adult supervision’.
· Reference needed to be made with regard to provision of First Aid.
· It was felt that Sections 5.27 and 5.34 should be merged into one
· Section 6 (Cumulative Impact) – Off-sales issues needed to be added to the list at section 6.1.
· The font for the whole document should be ‘Arial’. It was noted that the front cover of the draft document was in a different font and should be changed.
The Committee acknowledged the work that had gone into the production of the document, and thanked Officers.
The Committee also agreed that with regard to the de-regulation of late night refreshment, it should remain regulated.
a) That the revised Statement of Licensing Policy be considered for approval by the full Council, with inclusion of the amendments made by the Committee of the Licensing Authority, as detailed within these minutes; and
b) That in relation to the de-regulation of late night refreshment, no changes be made and that it remain regulated within the South Holland area.