Islington’s late night booze tax moves a step closer

Cllr Paul Convery

Cllr Paul Convery - Credit: Archant

A radical tax on late-night boozing moved a step closer today after the town hall launched a consultation.

The Late Night Levy is an Islington Council plan to fund the police and other services needed to deal with the borough’s rampant nighttime economy by imposing a charge on bars, restaurants and off licences who want to sell alcohol after midnight.

Islington has 1,300 licenced premises – nearly a third of which are licensed after midnight – and one in 20 deaths in the borough are linked to the bottle.

Cllr Paul Convery, Islington Council’s executive member for community safety, said: “Islington’s night-time economy has a big impact on residents, and puts extra strain on public resources.

“We’ve got more licensed late-night establishments per resident than almost anywhere else in the country. Policing, regulation and cleaning up cost a huge amount of money, and it’s fair for late-night premises to pay their share.

“Together with our wider licensing work, the late night levy will help us to tackle problems associated with the night-time economy. If businesses don’t want to pay the levy, they can simply choose to close at midnight.”

Consultation runs until January next year - if it goes ahead, the levy would come into force half way through 2014.

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To take part in the consultation visit www.islington.gov.uk/latenightlevy