The City of Sydney has called on the NSW Government to increase Small Bar licence capacity limits from 60 to 120 patrons and remove restrictions on trading hours for small bars in liquor freeze areas.
In its submission to the Liquor and Gaming NSW Review of the Small Bars Legislation, the City of Sydney is seeking an amendment to the Liquor Act 2007. Under the current laws, small bar licences are only available to venues with a capacity limit of 60 patrons, leading some small venues to apply for an on-premises (restaurant) licence or a hotel (general bar) licence.
The City has also asked for an extension of trading hours for small bars in liquor freeze areas to allow them to remain open until 2am, instead of midnight.
City of Sydney CEO Monica Barone said,“Sydney’s night-time economy is estimated to make a contribution to the economy of more than $19 billion and provide more than 31,000 jobs.
“More than 2,124 licensed premises contribute to creating a vibrant and diverse nightlife, helping Sydney to compete on the global stage as one of the most liveable and inviting cities.
“Refining the small bars legislation to increase patron numbers and ensure flexibility in trading hours will help the small bar scene reach its full potential.
“Venues with a small bar licence can often face the challenge of sustaining live music and performances with these limited patron numbers.
“The city’s submission recommends redefining the small bar licence to increase capacity limits to 120, facilitating greater creativity and innovation in our smaller venues.
“Increased patron numbers – a standard measure in other global cities – will increase the contribution small bars have on creating a lively nightlife for our residents, workers and visitors.”
Image courtesy of City of Sydney.