To regulate the liquor and gambling industries with integrity.
The Department of Racing, Gaming and Liquor is responsible for regulating and maintaining the integrity of lawful racing, gambling and liquor activities for Western Australians to participate in.
Annual licence fees
Licensees should by now have paid their annual licence fee invoices in full (deadline was January 1, 2016).
Nonpayment of the licence fee is likely to result in a late payment penalty, in addition to the original fee.
Subsequently, if the late payment penalty is not paid it could result in the suspension of the licence, and could ultimately see the licence being cancelled.
As a licensee, it is your responsibility to pay the fee on time and with the proper information attached to your payment.
Licensees should check their invoice for a list of acceptable payment methods; for more information, contact the Department on 9425 1888.
Liquor Legislation Amendment Act 2015
The first stage of amendments to the Liquor Control Act 1988 came into effect on November 20, 2015. The following is a summary of the main changes to the legislation:
Liquor Returns Submissions
Licensees can now lodge their liquor returns online via our website. To lodge your returns, go to the Liquor dropdown menu and select Liquor Returns. Alternatively, you can access the liquor returns portal under Quick Links.
Liquor licence decisions made on evidence-based submissions
From July 1, 2007 until January 31, 2015, 243 hotel, tavern, and small bar liquor licences were granted across the State, while 17 applications were refused.
Despite this approval rate, recently there has been public comment over the apparent disparity of “weight” given to evidence that is presented to the licensing authority in support of liquor licence applications against evidence presented by WA Police or the Executive Director Public Health (EDPH). In particular, it has been suggested that evidence relating to the tourism potential of a business does not carry as much weight as that relating to possible harm or ill health, and may result in the refusal of a licence application.
Click here to read more.
Department develops local government guide
The Department recently developed a liquor licensing guide for local government authorities.
The guide provides assistance and information for local governments in relation to the Liquor Control Act 1988, as well as highlighting the important role they play in the liquor licensing process.
It includes information regarding liquor exemptions, sections 64 and 175 liquor restrictions, and liquor restricted premises – it also outlines the powers available to local governments in respect to licensed premises.
The document, A Guide for Local Government, was developed in consultation with the WA Local Government Association and the Drug and Alcohol Office. Click here to access the guide.
Public Interest Assessment - Form 2A
As part of its report to the Minister for Racing and Gaming the Liquor Act Review Committee recommended, amongst other things, that theLiquor Control Act 1988 be amended to require applicants for new licences to complete a Community Impact Statement to support their application.
In response to this recommendation, the Department of Racing, Gaming and Liquor has developed a form to assist applicants in the preparation of a Public Interest Assessment (PIA) submission by setting out the criteria contained in the Director of Liquor Licensing’s policy - Public Interest Assessment in a questionnaire format.
The form will be available in two formats – a word template and a printable adobe/pdf document and can be accessed on the Department’s website.
Applicants should note that the space provided in the printable adobe/pdf document is not an indication of the amount of information which should be provided and additional information can be provided as an attachment if necessary.
Please note, it is not a mandatory requirement to complete the PIA Form 2A to prepare a PIA submission – this form has been provided to assist applicants in the preparation of a PIA by providing a questionnaire format – applicants can prepare a PIA submission in an alternate format if they wish.
Applying to become an approved manager at a licensed premises?
Click here for more information.
A note from the Director General on applying for a Liquor Licence
Disappointed applicants and commentators on liquor licensing decisions often do not understand why an apparent good idea for a “bar” is not approved by the liquor licensing authority.
While decisions of the licensing authority are governed by the Liquor Control Act 1988, an Act comprising some 320 pages, they are also governed by precedent decisions of the Supreme Court of Western Australia, with the Director of Liquor Licensing subject to further precedent decisions of the Liquor Commission.
Accordingly, licensing authority decisions must be evidentiary based with each application dealt with on its merits, and all parties to the proceedings being afforded procedural fairness.
Read more here.