'Last chance for pubs to reduce red tape'

By Michelle Perrett

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Red tape, License

Red tape: chance for industry to cut unnecessary regulatory burdens
Red tape: chance for industry to cut unnecessary regulatory burdens
The BII is urging publicans to tell the Government about their vital red tape concerns by 2 June.

The BII (British Institute of Innkeeping) is urging publicans to tell the Government about their red tape concerns.

The deadline has been extended to June 2 for licensees to submit their views on regulations that affect the food, drink and hospitality sector.

Views can be submitted online at the Red Tape Challenge website​.

BII chief Neil Robertson said: "It's vital we take this opportunity to have our say. Licensees must respond as quickly as possible and to assist we have uploaded information on our website about the regulations that are most likely to come under scrutiny."

Key pieces of unnecessary red tape highlighted by the British Beer and Pub Association are:

Triennial reviews' of licensing policies:​ This legal requirement is a pointless and costly exercise for hundreds of local councils and others wishing to respond. (Licensing Act 2003)

Smoke free signs and fines:​ There is no need for smoke free signs, as consumers and pubs are more than able to enforce the ban without this requirement. Huge fines, of up to £2,500 are totally disproportionate (Smoke-Free (Signs) Regulations 2007, The Smoke-Free (Penalties and Discounted Amounts) Regulations 2007)

Advertising licensing applications in local newspapers:​ This imposes a real cost burden on pubs, yet these small print ads may still not be seen by the public. (The Licensing Act 2003 (Premises Licenses and Club Premises Certificates))

Live Music exemption from special licensing requirements: ​There is no need for special licensing requirements for small music events, with an audience of less than 200 (Licensing Act 2003)

Alcohol Disorder Zones: ​Not one ADZ has ever been introduced. The Government should repeal. (Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006)

Underage sales: ​The current system is unfair, as it doesn't distinguish between 'human error' and any premises that are deliberately breaking the law, and should be based on an 'intent' to sell (Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006)

Cut bureaucracy in licensing applications: ​Licensees must send multiple paper copies of all their licensing applications to a list of 'responsible authorities'. This should be streamlined, as it is for electronic applications (Licensing Act 2003)

Mandatory Code/mandatory condition: ​These cost pubs around £32m per year. (The Licensing Act 2003)

• Make licensing application forms simpler: ​ Forms are too long and repetitive and waste a lot of pubs' and local councils' time (Licensing Act 2003 (Personal Licences) Regulations 2005)

Gluten-free labelling:​ Take pubs out of the gluten-free labelling scheme for pub menus - it's so complex that most pubs wouldn't risk selling such foods. (Foodstuffs Suitable for People Intolerant to Gluten (England) Regulations 2010)

Have your say at the Red Tape Challenge website​.

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