Western Australian venues will soon be able to offer customers alcohol without a meal under reforms to the state’s liquor laws.
The changes to the Liquor Control Amendment Bill are part of an election pledge by the Labor government and are set to be introduced to State Parliament next week.
The reforms will allow licensed restaurants with a capacity of 120 or less to serve alcohol to patrons without a meal. Currently, licensed restaurants are required to apply for a separate permit to be granted this authority.
Customers will also be allowed to take home a half-finished bottle of wine should they wish.
The changes have been widely praised by the hospitality industry, with R&CA CEO Juliana Payne admitting the Western Australian Government’s reforms would significantly reduce the red tape burden associated with liquor licensing for the state’s restaurant sector.
“We strongly commend the Western Australian government for implementing a host of sensible, common-sense measures designed to lessen the impact of red tape, which we know is one of the biggest issues facing hospitality operators across the country,” she says.
According to ABC, Tourism Minister Paul Papalia said potential venues deemed to be low risk, such as sporting clubs and small bars, would no longer face onerous public interest assessments.
“We are moving to try and change the culture of drinking in Western Australia, towards a more continental European drinking culture,” he says. “That is going to help tourism, help hospitality, it’s going to grow jobs in that sector, make it more vibrant and diverse.”