Experts back alcohol minimum pricing

Gloucester City Council is to begin a consultation on introducing a night levy for late night traders next month.

Gloucester is a lively city, drawing in visitors to attractions such as the docks, the city centre and to clubs and bars within the city boundary, as part of a vibrant night-time economy for residents and visitors.

Most people enjoy themselves safely and responsibly without creating any issues. However, an active night-time economy does bring additional costs for the council, the police and other agencies which deal with issues such as crime and disorder, anti-social behaviour and hospital admissions.

The city council already has many initiatives to tackle this including high quality CCTV, taxi marshals and street pastors, but these are resource intensive so the introduction of a late night levy would allow relevant businesses to financially contribute toward these, and new schemes, to make sure that Gloucester continues to be a safe destination.

The levy will be discussed at the city council’s cabinet meeting on Wednesday 14th September and if introduced it would be a charge made to all alcohol licensed premises within the city boundary (pubs, off licences, restaurants and members clubs) that are authorised to supply alcohol between midnight and 6am.

In Gloucester there are currently 185 premises licensed premises authorised to sell or supply alcohol at these times.

The council wants to seek the views of the city’s late night traders so a full consultation will begin on Thursday 15th September and run until Wednesday 7th December.

Cllr Jennie Dallimore, deputy leader of Gloucester City Council said, “We want to make sure that all our residents, and the people who visit our city, feel safe. If a late night levy was adopted the revenue raised would help manage the night-time economy, particularly to reduce or prevent crime and disorder and public nuisance. I urge all night time traders to take part in our consultation and to give us their views.”

The city council would be entitled to retain up to 30% of the net income from the levy whilst the remaining 70% would be paid to the Gloucestershire Police and Crime Commissioner.

There is a proposal to apply a 30% reduction for premises that participate in both CitySafe and those that have obtained Best Bar None accreditation.

Gloucester News Centre – http://gloucesternewscentre.co.uk

Late night levy considered for Gloucester by Shaun Moore | Gloucester News Centre - http://gloucesternewscentre.co.uk/