Rangers back 1am ‘lock out’ bid

Byron Council rangers are backing a bid by mayor Cr Jan Barham for a trial 1am ‘lock out’ for Byron Bay licensed premises.

A report to today’s council meeting says rangers are constantly being confronted and abused by drunken people when carrying out camping patrols.

The report also says authorities have to deal with many complaints about noisy patrons returning to vehicles and disturbing residents.

In a notice of motion due to be moved at the meeting, Cr Barham will seek the support of the State Government for a trial 1am ‘lock out’.

She will also call for support from the Byron Bay Liquor Accord, but that support already seems most unlikely to be offered.

Accord spokesman, Gary Charles, last week said nightclub operators were ‘bewildered’ as to why Cr Barham would push for a special resolution instead of consulting with the accord.

Mr Charles said Byron Bay already had a voluntary 2am curfew that all accord members had agreed to seven years ago in consultation with local police.

Additionally, he said, accord members had self-imposed restrictions on shots and rounds of drinks for large groups after certain times through the night.

Cr Barham’s push for the trial comes after a call by a coalition of emergency workers for tough new restrictions on alcohol trading to curb alcohol-related violence.

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