Hundreds of Queensland liquor licences have been suspended by the Office of Liquor and Gaming following the non-payment of fees.
The department issued suspension notices to 702 industry licensees in August who failed to pay their annual fees.
At midnight on August 29, 279 of those liquor licences were automatically cancelled as a result of the failure to pay the annual fee.
Once cancelled, Queensland liquor licences cannot be reinstated without a formal application process. Licensees face suspension from liquor trading for up to 28 days.
“The majority of these licensees had gone out of business during the 2018-19 financial year,” an office spokeswoman said.
Queensland licensing fees range from $3842 for a commercial hotel, hotels in remote part of the state pay $376, while a bottle shop pays $4267 and a community club with fewer than 2000 members is charged $710.
Liquor and Gaming reports that 8104 licensees (or 92.26%) paid their liquor licence fees by the due date of July 31, 2019.
“If licensees are unable to make this payment as a result of personal or financial hardship or where their premises had been adversely affected by natural disaster they can apply to the Office of Liquor and Gaming Regulation to pay their fee in instalments,” the spokeswoman said.
In July, a hotel in Toowoomba and a restaurant in Bulimba were charged for selling liquor illegally for almost six months without a licence or permit.
Boutique Pub Co was fined $40,000 in the Toowoomba Magistrates Court on July 12, 2019 for breaching section 169 of the Liquor Act by selling liquor illegally at the business The Florence when no licence or permit was in place.
Thirsty Occasions was also fined $50,000 on 19 July 2019 in the Brisbane Magistrates Court for carrying out the same offence at the business Oxford Garden.
In April, XXXX brewery has confessed it’s been accidentally running its Brisbane Alehouse, bar and restaurant for more than 15 years without a permit.
Brisbane City Council became aware the XXXX Alehouse was operating without an appropriate permit when the brewery contacted Council after discovering the oversight themselves.