From the olgr

Mike Sarquis
Executive Director, OLGR

p: 13 QGOV (13 74 68)

I’d like to echo the Attorney-General’s sentiments and congratulate David Ford on his decades-long service and substantial contribution to the effective regulation of the liquor and gaming industries in Queensland. 

I have known and worked closely with David for over 30 years in the public service. His dedication to his responsibilities in the liquor, gaming and consumer affairs areas is admirable and his contribution not just within our state, but also at a national and international level, has been significant. 

I’m sure you’ll join me in congratulating David on his service in shaping the direction of the Queensland hospitality industry and his service to consumers.

A different look ‘Behind the Bar’

Two new videos have recently been launched as part of the Behind the Bar training series.

Think Ahead and We All Play a Role were developed following the popularity of the first two instalments (Just One More and Tricky Situation) as training resources for you, the club industry, as well as for registered training organisations your staff may use.

They have been produced to focus on common, real-life scenarios, helping to explore why it is important to ensure responsible service of alcohol to all patrons, including ‘happy drunks’.
We All Play a Role also focuses on the role glassies and other roaming staff who work from ‘behind the bar’ play in the responsible service of alcohol. 

Just like the previous videos, they are based on the ‘observe, engage, assess, have a plan and provide a solution’ model of refusal of service. The videos also offer moments to pause play and discuss tactics, tips and tricks between staff.

These additional resources are informed by findings from the Office of Liquor and Gaming Regulation’s (OLGR) mystery shopper program, compliance operations in the field and incident information provided by the Queensland Police Service.

By now you should have received an email providing you with links to the training videos, as well as handy discussion points to share with staff, and downloadable posters and LCD images for display at your club.

Please take the time to check out the videos and start sharing them with your staff, including as part of induction and refresher training.

For more information and to view the videos head to www.business.qld.gov.au/rsa

QCOM 3: A first of its kind

I’d like to take the opportunity to update you on some exciting developments surrounding the QCOM 3 protocol – the language that EGMs use to speak to one another.

QCOM 3 is the new version of QCOM which encourages better technology, and promotes tailored products and services to support the evolving demands of today’s customers. To ease this transition, OLGR has delivered software to Licensed Monitoring Operators

(LMOs) and Gaming Machine Manufacturers that allows QCOM 3 EGMs to communicate via the QCOM 1.6 protocol. LMOs have made monitoring system enhancements that are now approved to accommodate QCOM 3 and make use of this software.

So, what does this mean for you? 
Venues are afforded as much flexibility as they want in terms of adopting QCOM 3. Existing QCOM 1.6 and prior games and product will continue to be available and approved as normal, and new QCOM 3 games can even run on the fibre-optic network. 

However, QCOM 3’s most significant longer-term value is in its promotion of Ethernet network communication. This is a cheap, available, fast, secure and reliable network arrangement, and some venues would already have such a platform in place.

QCOM 3 paves the way for a single network within your venue, and most importantly innovation in products and services. With it, come a significantly easier way of implementing new functionality and services when desired. On an Ethernet network, in the future when QCOM 3 EGMs start to become available, the enhanced protocol envisages new and better advanced jackpots, tailored loyalty programs, ease of cash in and out services, paging services, collaborative game designs and game play, and much more.

It can also be upgraded remotely via the Ethernet network, meaning new or upgraded QCOM 3 games can be installed without technician attendance.

More than 43,000 EGMs in Queensland currently run the QCOM protocol, and gaming providers in the Northern Territory, Tasmania, Victoria, South Australia, New South Wales and New Zealand have also adopted it.
I look forward to providing further updates on QCOM 3 as it continues to gain traction in Queensland. 

Applying for extended trading hours this festive season 

Do you want to extend your venue’s trading hours over the festive season? As we head into the end of year festive season, it’s handy to know the process to apply for one-off extended trading hours. 

You can apply for one-off extended trading hours for: 
  • Four dates in any twelve-month period for pre-10am trading.
  • Six dates in a calendar year for trading between 12 midnight and 5am.
Applications for an extended hours’ permit must be made at least 21 days before the day of the event. Any applications lodged within that timeframe won’t be processed unless the application has police endorsement, including agreement as to any proposed conditions.

Applications for post-midnight extended hours trading permits can be approved by the Commissioner, providing they meet certain criteria, including that persons other than the licensee or owner of the licensed premises wish to celebrate a ‘special occasion’. 

A ‘special occasion’ is defined as a ‘special public event’, or an event such as a wedding, birthday or other private occasion being celebrated that is not open to the public. A ‘special public event’ is further defined as a unique or infrequent event of local, state or national significance. 

The Commissioner for Liquor and Gaming has determined that New Year’s Eve is a self-evident special occasion. The permit will only be granted for the period of the special occasion and for a reasonable time before and after the occasion. 

Lodging an application does not guarantee it will be approved. Advertising or promoting your event before a permit has been granted is done at your own risk.

For more information about post-midnight permits, visit www.business.qld.gov.au/liquor-gaming and go to ‘liquor-related permits’.

Guide to Christmas and New Year trading

To help you prepare for the busiest time of the year, here’s a quick guide to liquor and gaming trading during the festive season.

Christmas Eve

The sale and supply of alcohol must finish at 12 midnight, regardless of whether you have approved extended trading hours that allow for later trading. Patrons must finish alcoholic drinks by 12.30am on Christmas Day. All gaming machine operations must cease at 12 midnight on Christmas Eve and may not recommence before 10am on Boxing Day.

Christmas Day

You are permitted to sell and supply alcohol between 10am and 12 midnight in conjunction with a meal in a part of the premises that is ordinarily set aside for dining, if the meal is also prepared, served and intended to be eaten on the premises. Patrons can purchase alcohol for one hour before eating their meal, while they are eating their meal, and for one hour after finishing their meal. 

Electronic machine gaming is not to be conducted on Christmas Day, as prescribed by the Gaming Machine Regulation 2002.

Takeaway alcohol can’t be sold on Christmas Day and adult entertainment venues are prohibited from providing adult entertainment from 12 midnight on Christmas Eve and throughout Christmas Day.

On Christmas Day, licensees with accommodation can provide alcohol to in-house accommodation residents and their bona fide guests in their rooms or units only. They may also serve alcohol to patrons eating a meal in the dining area of the premises between 10am and 12 midnight. This means that alcohol may be served to patrons for 1 hour before dining, during the course of a meal and for one hour after the meal is finished.

Boxing Day

Usual trading hours and conditions resume for Boxing Day.

New Year’s Eve

On New Year's Eve, licensees are permitted to sell or supply alcohol until 2am on New Year's Day without any need for approval from OLGR. This applies regardless of your regular approved trading hours. This means that the bar must finish serving at 2am, unless the premises is currently approved to trade beyond 2am. For more information, visit www.business.qld.gov.au/liquor-gaming and search for ‘Christmas and New Year trading hours for licensed premises’.

Excluded persons report opens Jan 1

The online link to allow you to report your gaming exclusions data for the period 1 July to 31 December 2018 will be open from January 1, 2019.

You can report using the online form at www.surveymonkey.com/r/exclusions 

Legislation requires all Queensland gaming venues to provide this information to OLGR every 6 months. Your exclusions report is due by 21 January 2019.

For assistance, please phone (07) 3033 0015 or email gamingstatistics@justice.qld.gov.au

Did you know?

Did you know that OLGR has a ready-made safety audit model for use by licensees who decide to conduct their own review of safety in and around their venue? While not required by law, a periodical safety audit of your venue can help you pick up existing or potential risks to your patrons and staff. 

To check out the free guide, head to www.business.qld.gov.au/liquor-gaming and type ‘No More Risky Business’ in to the search box.