Time is running out to respond to the Scottish Government’s consultation on the introduction of a fee for applying to renew a personal licence.
The consultation closes on August 15.
The Scottish Government believes there is a strong case for such a fee to help Licensing Boards across Scotland cover the cost of administration. It takes the view that as the fee for the grant of a personal licence application is £50, then it is reasonable and proportionate that the renewal is also set at £50.
The SGF and ACS are calling on retailers to object to the proposal, as they believe it is important that the Scottish Government realises the disproportionate effect the introduction of a fee would have on retailers.
The current licensing regime went live in September 2009 and requires a personal licence to be renewed every 10 years. This means personal licences will be due for renewal next September. The window for first renewal applications opens on 31 August 2018 and closes on 31 May 2019.
The SGF and ACS have issued the following template responses to the consultation questions that retailers may use to demonstrate their opposition to the planned fee:
- Do you agree that a fee for renewal of a personal licence should be introduced?
- In response, retailers should explain the impact of the fee on their business, for example the financial impact of renewal (£50 x number of stores) and administrative impact.
- Do you agree that £50 is an appropriate new fee level?
- £50 is the same cost as applying for a personal licence. Renewing a personal licence will require less amount of work and therefore this should be reflected in the cost.
- If not, what do you consider would be an appropriate fee level?
- The Scottish Government should consider removing the requirement to renew a personal licence to avoid cost of administration rather than introducing a fee for renewal. This would be consistent with England and Wales who removed the requirement to renew a personal licence in 2015.
Objections can be lodged on the Scottish Government website.