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Safe Night Precinct - QLD

15 September 2014

One key component of the Safe Night Out Strategy is the establishment of 15 Safe Night Precincts (SNPs) across the state where there is a concentration of licensed venues. A SNP board may be established within each precinct, which will be an incorporated association.

The Liquor Act specifies membership eligibility requirements for SNP associations. This includes licensees of licensed premises located in the precinct, owners or operators of other businesses located in the precinct and associations that represents the interests of businesses located in the precinct, including local Chambers of Commerce.

Consultation with local government and members of proposed public safety consultative committee (PSCC)

Over recent weeks, OLGR has consulted with local authorities and Queensland Government agencies in the 15 identified SNPs, including about their role as members of proposed public safety consultative committees whose role will be to provide advice and assistance to SNP boards.

Consultation with licensees and other stakeholders

Consultation meetings, to provide information about the Safe Night Out Strategy to liquor licensees and other local stakeholders were conducted across the state from 1-10 September 2014.

The meetings comprised of an information forum, where OLGR and the Queensland Police Service provided stakeholders with information and answered questions about the proposed SNPs as well as other key initiatives of the Safe Night Out Strategy including:

  • implementing a system of linked ID scanners
  • enhanced liquor licensing and compliance arrangements
  • tougher penalties, police bans and other increased consequences for people behaving badly in and around licensed premises.

Following each information forum, meetings were held with licensees and other stakeholders operating within proposed SNP areas focusing on the role of SNP boards for SNPs and the process for incorporating an association to be the board.

As at 9 September 2014 licensees in the following proposed SNP areas passed resolutions to form incorporated associations to become boards for the relevant SNPs:

  • Bundaberg
  • Fortitude Valley
  • Gladstone
  • Rockhampton
  • Sunshine Coast
  • Toowoomba.

Licensees in Brisbane, Broadbeach, Cairns, Ipswich, Mackay, Surfers Paradise and Townsville determined to meet again to hold further discussions before making a formal decision about forming an incorporated association. Airlie Beach met on 10 September and Caxton Street is still to meet to consider the matter. OLGR are providing any assistance requested by licensees to help in these processes.

Sober safe centre

Another key element of the Safe Night Out Strategy is the trial of a 'sober safe centre' in the Brisbane CBD. This will operate from the Brisbane Magistrates Court cells.

The 'sober safe centre' is scheduled to open the weekend of 4 October 2014 and will be managed by the Queensland Police Service.

SNP funding program

OLGR will administer 3 funding programs for the SNPs.

The first funding program will provide each SNP Board with initial funding of $50,000 to assist the incorporated associations with set up and running expenses. This funding could be used for various purposes including secretariat expenses, the hire of meeting rooms, engaging a facilitator to assist with the development of an annual plan and/or implementing qualifying initiatives.

The second funding program comprises a pool of $8M. SNP Boards will be able to apply for grants up to a specified amount each quarter, to be drawn from this pool of funding. Grants may be offered for such things as improved lighting, signage, CCTV or other initiatives identified for individual areas as being beneficial in achieving the SNP Board's objective of promoting the responsible service and consumption of alcohol and minimising the risk of alcohol and drug-related harm and associated violence in the precinct.

The final funding program is for rest and recovery services. This comprises a budget of $2.124M for the first year, $3.54M for the second and third years and $3.68M for the 2017-18 financial year. This is to enable SNP Boards to contract providers of rest and recovery services appropriate to their individual precincts.