From the olgr

Brian Bauer
Acting Executive Director, OLGR

p: 13 QGOV (13 74 68)

Thanks to the large number of licensees who paid their annual liquor licence fees on time by 31 July.

If you haven’t paid your annual liquor licence fee by now, your licence will have been suspended. Please pay your fees by 28 August to avoid your liquor licence being automatically cancelled. 

Selling liquor with a suspended or cancelled licence may incur a fine of $2,669 or be subject to prosecution action.

Continue to promote responsible gambling

Following on from Responsible Gambling Awareness Week 2019, I ask all gambling providers to continue to promote responsible gambling. I was encouraged to see those licensees who got involved and supported this year’s event. 

Please keep in mind your duty of care to gamblers at your venue is important and must be ongoing. 

This issue was highlighted recently in New South Wales where a licensed venue faced potential disciplinary action after a patron’s suicide in 2018 was linked to his severe gambling problem. The venue was accused of contributing to the patron’s death through neglect and ‘irresponsible’ gambling practices. 

It is alleged that pleas to the venue from the patron’s family members and his estranged wife to help curb his gambling habit, were not acted upon. According to the patron’s family he was commonly spending up to 13 hours at a time playing the venue’s gaming machines. After one such gambling binge, the patron’s body was later discovered in bushland close to the venue.

I also remind you we’re heading into Spring racing season – a time when the potential for harm caused by gambling can sometimes be masked by the promotion of glamour and fun from the races. As a licensee or employee of a gaming venue, you play an important role in observing, monitoring and communicating with your patrons and minimising the potential for harm in gambling activities at your venue.

I urge you to read the article below introducing our new High Stakes responsible service of gambling (RSG) training video series.

The four, real-life scenarios show how your staff can spot the signs of a potential gambling problem and effectively help the gambler and a concerned third party. Most importantly, the videos will help with RSG practices at your venue.

The videos are available on the Business Queensland website at www.business.qld.gov.au/rsg 

RSG training videos

We have launched four new responsible service of gambling (RSG) training videos to complement our popular Behind the bar (responsible service of alcohol) series.

The series, called High Stakes, use real-life scenarios to encourage gaming staff to be aware and know their role and options when identifying and approaching problem gamblers and providing support to not only them, but their friends and family.
Unlike alcohol-related problems, gambling problems can be harder to detect. Club staff know their venue, the popular machines, regular patrons and their behaviour so are in an ideal position to minimise harm.

The videos offer moments where club licensees and trainers can pause play and discuss tactics, tips and tricks with staff. Discussion points are also available to download and distribute. 

Posters are also available to download and display back-of-house to increase staff awareness of the signs of problem gambling and support options. 

These resources have been created thanks to feedback we received direct from Clubs Queensland and we hope they continue to build a culture across Queensland gaming venues that promotes and supports problem gambling.

New guideline released for acoustic consultants

Last month, the OLGR released Liquor Guideline 51: Preparing an acoustic report. This guideline replaced Liquor Guideline 50: Acoustic Consultants. 

An acoustic report from a qualified sound engineer or acoustic consultant will generally be required if:
  • entertainment is to be provided at a licensed premises
  • noise from any source at the licensed premises, is, or is likely to be made at a level in excess of 75dB(C) fast response, when measured three metres from the source
  •  a licensee applies to vary or remove a current noise condition on their licence.                  
This guideline outlines how an acoustic engineer or consultant should prepare an acoustic report which recommends noise levels that, if met, should prevent unreasonable noise impacting nearby residents and businesses. 

The new guideline, created in consultation with industry, allows for noise levels to be set at locations external to the venue. 

By having noise conditions set externally, licensees will have greater flexibility to vary the level and type of noise created inside their venue without having to seek any variation to their licence conditions. This can be done by taking measures to mitigate noise in a way that ensures the externally set levels are not exceeded. 

Noise mitigation measures may simply involve ensuring all doors and windows are closed while entertainment is conducted and/or positioning speakers in a way that limits noise escaping from the venue. In other situations the licensee may need to install temporary or permanent sound proofing to contain noise. The expert who prepares the acoustic report will be able to provide advice on noise mitigation measures that can be implemented at the venue.

To assist with the transition, the OLGR will continue to accept reports prepared under Guideline 50 until 31 December 2019. Existing licensees are not required to have an acoustic report prepared unless they want to take advantage of the benefits of the revised methodologies, or are otherwise required to provide a report, for example when seeking to vary current noise conditions.

Visit www.business.qld.gov.au/liquor-gaming for further information.