Amendment made to liquor laws

THE state government has introduced a Gaming and Liquor Administration Amendment Bill after ‘‘growing concern and frustration’’ was expressed by ‘‘some industry and community stakeholders’’.

In a second reading speech on Tuesday, Deputy Premier Troy Grant said existing the regulations were ‘‘no longer fit for purpose’’.

Mr Troy said the changes would improve the management of liquor laws but ‘‘not encroach on’’ the government’s policy settings, including 1.30am lockouts and the 3am ceasing of liquor service.

But community advocate Tony Brown said the impending changes were ‘‘the biggest setbacks to effectively preventing alcohol-related harms’’.

‘‘There has ben no effective community consultation on these changes, there has been no regulatory impact assessment as required,’’ Mr Brown said.

‘‘This only reinforces the massive power-resource imbalance between the liquor industry and the community.’’

The Newcastle Herald foreshadowed the changes earlier this month.

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