Alcohol reforms to take effect

THE state government has announced new alcohol reforms that will take effect this month.

The reforms will allow licensed restaurants and cafes to supply a limited volume of alcohol with takeaway or delivery meals without having to apply and pay for a second licence.

These changes are intended to help the hospitality industry recover from the economic
impacts of COVID-19.

Businesses will be able to include limited packaged liquor, and hotels, bars, restaurants and cafes wanting to extend their trading hours from 11pm to 1am will now be able to do so automatically, without having to apply for a license change.

Those businesses that currently hold Temporary Limited Licences (TLLs) expiring in March will be able to access a new streamlined process to apply for a new TLL – allowing them
to continue selling alcohol outdoors.

Liquor Regulation Minister Melissa Horne said all changes have been accessed to reduce harm to the community.

“These important reforms balance supporting Victoria’s hospitality and entertainment industries post-pandemic while ensuring harm minimisation remains a key focus,” she said.

“All changes have been assessed to reduce both harm to the community and unnecessary
hurdles for small businesses, which we know did it really tough during the pandemic.”

The reforms include harm minimisation measures, some of which will take effect later
this year.

All online sales of alcohol will the subjects to the same conditions, including protection for
minors. Those supplying alcohol will need to deliver in person to first time customers and verify their age and ID.

There will also be greater clarity around alcohol advertising that is likely to appeal to
minors, promotes violence or is of a sexual, degrading or sexist nature.

Further measures intended to minimise harm are set to come into effect throughout the year, including making it an offence to deliver alcohol to an intoxicated person and making it compulsory for large packaged liquor stores to undertake a community impact assessment as part of the licencing application.