How to lodge objections or complaints with the Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation


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Melbourne is a vibrant, dynamic city. Our historic buildings, shopping precincts, beautiful public gardens and cultural organisations make Melbourne a wonderful place to live.  While we realise that new developments and refurbishments of existing buildings are a part of living in the city, these can sometimes impact negatively on the quality of life as residents.  However, as rate-payers, we have a right to object where we feel development or proposed changes to operation of an established business will impact on the amenity of our neighbourhood. The following is a guide to where you can go for information and processes you can follow to formally object to new planning permits or liquor licence applications.  

Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation (VCGLR)  

The VCGLR regulates Victoria’s gambling and liquor industries and has the vision ‘that Victorians and visitors enjoy safe and responsible gambling and liquor environments.’ It does not have jurisdiction over council-related matters such as local planning permits. The VCGLR News provides a free monthly electronic newsletter to help you stay informed and you can subscribe to it at:  https://www.vision6.com.au/em/forms/subscribe.php?db=458342&s=160852&a=51925&k=cb599c6 

You may want to start with a general summary of local government authorities and their role in the regulation of gambling and liquor, which you will find at: https://www.vcglr.vic.gov.au/about-us/regulatory-structure/local-government-authorities   

Complaints

Complaints can be made in writing, either by hard copy or email or online. It’s useful to note that while you can make a complaint anonymously, providing your details will enable follow up if further information is required. These details are kept private.  If you wish to make a complaint about possible breaches to liquor or gambling legislation, for example, drunken or anti-social behaviour or the Responsible Serving of Alcohol, you can find information and form available at https://www.vcglr.vic.gov.au/i-want/complaints

Amenity complaints

You can submit a formal amenity complaint where a licensed premises is causing detriment to, or detraction from, the amenity of an area. Amenity is defined as the “quality of that area as being pleasant and agreeable”. This could include such things as drunkenness, noise disturbance to occupiers of other premises, obstructing footpaths and littering. Check out the Amenity Complaints Fact Sheet at https://www.vcglr.vic.gov.au/sites/default/files/Liquor%20Licensing%20Fact%20Sheet%20-%20Amenity%20complaints.pdf 

Objecting to a liquor licence application

The VCGLR provides a process for objecting to a liquor licence application. It is important to note that you will be required to provide your name and address as part of the objection and these details will be made available to the licence applicant. Information can be found at: https://www.vcglr.vic.gov.au/community-services/objecting-liquor-licence-application.  You can also search online to search current liquor licences and applications throughout Victoria at: https://liquor.vcglr.vic.gov.au/alarm_internet/alarm_internet.asp?wci=start_alarm_internet 

Information on the freeze on granting new liquor licences applications for trading after 1am in local government areas in Melbourne (and Docklands) can be found at: https://www.vcglr.vic.gov.au/late-night-freeze 

You can contact the VCGLR at: 
Client Services: 1300 182 457 
Email: contact@vcglr.vic.gov.au 

Other useful links  

Guidelines for Public (display) Notices: https://www.vcglr.vic.gov.au/sites/default/files/Guidelines%20for%20display%20of%20public%20notice.pdf  

Application to the Commission for an internal review:  
https://www.vcglr.vic.gov.au/sites/default/files/uploadapplication_to_the_commission_for_internal_review.pdf  

Maximum patron capacity: https://www.vcglr.vic.gov.au/sites/default/files/fact_sheet_maximum_patron_capacity.pdf  

Plan of licensed premises: https://www.vcglr.vic.gov.au/sites/default/files/uploadLiquor_licensing_fact_sheet_-_Plans_of_licensed_premises.pdf  

Hearings and decisions:
https://www.vcglr.vic.gov.au/page-footer/hearings-and-decisions  

Prosecutions:
https://www.vcglr.vic.gov.au/prosecutions-vcglr  

Demerit Point Register:
https://www.vcglr.vic.gov.au/current-demerit-point-register  

Enforceable Undertakings:
https://www.vcglr.vic.gov.au/compliance-and-enforcement/enforceable-undertakings