- Meeting of Joint Meeting - Local Licensing Forum and Licensing Board, Thursday, 3rd July, 2014 10.00 am (Item 9.)
- View the background to item 9.
Ruary Campbell advised that while the media occasionally reported on decisions of the Licensing Board, it was difficult to get any media interest on issues such as the Purple Flag and the work being done by ADP in relation to educational material, and suggested that this could be something for the Board and Forum to look at in future.
He also asked for an update on the refresher certificates. Mr Anderson advised that all the procedures were in place, and it was now up to licence holders to submit their paperwork for processing. He added that it was a huge job for the service and asked that if there were any concerns with the process, that these be raised with the team. The general message was that licence holders should communicate with officers and not leave the organisation of their training to the last minute.
Mr Campbell added that the training had not been updated in the last five years, and suggested that this could be looked at in future. He also added that there were potential issues with the role of premises manager, namely that there was no criteria which stipulated that the premises manager required to hold a personal licence, nor any additional qualifications which were necessary. He suggested that there could be a qualification for premises managers. He also noted that although he had submitted his paperwork in February, he had yet to receive his certificate.
Mr Anderson advised that although there might be delays in the certificates being received due to the volume of paperwork to be processed, the important factor was for the training to have been undertaken prior to the deadline, so as long as this had been done, licence holders should not be concerned if they did not receive their certificate before the deadline had passed.
In relation to the issue of premises manager, Councillor Boulton advised that any qualification for premises managers would have to be progressed via legislation, although she added that the Licensing Board could lobby for this if required. She added that the Licensing Standards Officers could also highlight any concerns to the Board. Inspector Hume noted that there had been issues with the level of management at some premises, and suggested that the Police presentation could be given to a wider audience, through UNIGHT.
BEST BAR NONE
Emily Queen took the opportunity to remind the Joint Meeting of the Best Bar None scheme, highlighting that it showed willingness on the part of premises to work towards best practice. She suggested that the Board could be mindful of this where applications were received from premises who had membership of either UNIGHT or Best Bar None.
AIR WEAPONS AND LICENSING BILL
Eric Anderson updated the Joint Meeting on the above Bill which was to take effect from 2015. He highlighted particular changes to the legislation, including:-
· the creation of a new offence for supplying alcohol to children and young people for consumption in a public place
· the amendment of Licensing Objective 5: Protecting Children From Harm to include ‘young people’
· a change to the duration of the Statement of Licensing Policy to better align with the term of the Licensing Board
· changes to the fit and proper person test
· the removal of the automatic requirement for a hearing
· spent convictions would no longer be disregarded
· it would be the duty of the Licensing Board to prepare an annual financial report
· the removal of the five year restriction in relation to refresher training
Mr Anderson advised that officers would look at the impact of the Bill and identify if any further response was required.
Inspector Hume noted that the Police had written to the Licensing Board about proof of identity for applicants, and asked if the issue had been resolved. Mr Anderson advised that the matter was still to be determined.
MEMBERSHIP OF LICENSING FORUM
Councillor Lawrence asked about the off-sales representation on the Local Licensing Forum and suggested that a truer picture in relation to off-sales would be available if other partners were invited to participate in the Forum. The Convener advised that it had proved difficult in the past to engage with off-sales retailers and Councillor Lawrence stated that his son worked for Morrisons, and would be happy to be involved.
ACTIVITIES FOR YOUNG PEOPLE
Ken Eddie suggested that the Council could look to open up venues such as the Beach Ballroom for young people who wanted somewhere to go, but might not want to go to a licensed premises. The Convener suggested that this suggestion would probably be better directed to youth workers, and Councillor Lawrence advised that with the recent changes to community centres, although there were many youth workers who were keen to set up activities for young people, at the moment, the staff and volunteer levels were such that this was proving to be difficult. The Convener thanked Mr Eddie for the contribution however, noting that there was evidence that diversionary activities were a contributing factor to avoiding the intake of alcohol.
Finally, the Convener thanked all members for their attendance, and advised that the Clerk to the Licensing Forum would liaise with the Clerk to the Licensing Board about the date of the next annual meeting.
- ALEXANDER KELMAN, Convener