WA Labor’s Liquor Licensing policy announcement today backs AHA and industry concerns that the WA Police and Department of Public Health’s ongoing objections to licenses are a barrier to advancing tourism in Western Australia.
AHA(WA) CEO, Bradley Woods, said “WA Labor’s policy has responded to an abuse of power by our law enforcement agencies and public health agencies in objecting to all new license applications regardless of the public interest.
“It shows an immaturity when government agencies can waste tax-payers funds to pursue anti-alcohol political agendas.
“The rejection of Old Treasury’s application for a 24 hour license is an excellent example of how these objections can prevent world-class venues from catering to the needs of a maturing public.
“WA Labor’s proposal to recognise the tourism, cultural and artistic value of venues is a step in the right direction in supporting hospitality and job creation. It shouldn’t however be limited to small bars and restaurants and should include equal consideration of iconic hotels, pubs and taverns.
“As the strength of Western Australia’s mining boom softens, tourism has an opportunity to make a greater contribution to the state’s economy.
“The WA government is already drafting the first stage of legislative reforms, to WA’s liquor laws and there is a one-off opportunity to prioritise amendments that will extend trading hours and reduce red tape burdens on business which in turn can enhance tourism experiences,” Mr Woods concluded.