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To approve as a correct record the minutes of the meeting of the Committee held on 18 December 2013, and to authorise the Chairman to sign them.
The minutes of the meeting held on 18 May 2013 were agreed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.
PRESENTATION ON THE LICENSING STRATEGY
The Committee is to receive a presentation on the Licensing Strategy.
The Committee received a presentation on the Licensing Strategy from the Public Protection, Licensing and Health and Safety Divisional Manager. This presentation was provided an opportunity for the Committee to be informed on how the reshaped Licensing Strategy would address issues that continued to be raised by Members.
The presentation highlighted what Members wanted from the Licensing Strategy/Policy
• Limit licenced premises to current levels in key areas where Members were of the opinion that the number of premises were high
• Keep businesses in business
• Reduce the adverse and expensive effects of excessive drinking on Police, Health and the Council
The presentation also detailed the following other key themes:
• Spread of off-licences
• Access to alcohol near schools and colleges
• Night-time economy concerns
• Support the Licensing Committee
The presentation outlined a step by step approach that had been developed to address the following issues that the strategy/policy would try to achieve:
Reduce age-restricted sales, particularly in the vicinity of schools and colleges
The Committee was informed that the approach would be to limit the sale of alcohol from premises within 400 metres of schools and colleges and along prime routes for walking school children.
Other measures would be to attempt to control the products offered for sale and on window displays at premises in the close proximity of schools and colleges, focussing on premises that persistently failed under-age test purchases carried out by Trading Standards. In addition, we would seek to prohibit the sale of alcohol before 11.00am from premises within 400 metres of schools and colleges.
The Committee noted that all these would be achieved either by Intelligence-led test purchase exercises, informed by Police or complaints received.
Consistency in approach to tackling problems associated with licensed premises
The Committee was informed that the aim would be for the Licensing Strategy, Licensing Policy and Drug and Alcohol Strategy to be consistent in their approach. It would be expected that the Director of Public Health and Licensing Team work closely together to ensure consistency across appropriate strategies and policies.
Control the availability of alcohol after pubs close to reduce anti-social behaviour
The Committee was informed that the aim would be to prohibit off-sales after 2300 hours for new applications and encourage existing off-licences to pull their closing hours back to 23.00 hours.
On issues relating to the control of street drinking, the presentation detailed that a review of crime and disorder hot spots would be considered by the Community Safety Partnership. This would lead to designated Public Place Orders being introduced where appropriate
Control cumulative impacts
The Committee was informed that the special policy would apply to all licensed premises in the existing areas of Romford and Hornchurch where a Cumulative Impact Zone currently existed in respect of premises restricted to on-sales only.
Applications in these areas would presume to be refused unless exceptional circumstances prevailed.
The special policy would be extended to other areas where there were demonstrable alcohol-related problems.
The Committee ... view the full minutes text for item 20.