Lib Dems propose drinks surcharge to tackle binge drinking policing and clean-up

30 August 2011 by
Lib Dems propose drinks surcharge to tackle binge drinking policing and clean-up

The Liberal Democrats are considering plans for a "per drink surcharge" to pay for extra police and street cleaners to cover the cost of binge drinking.

The proposal, to be debated by the party at its conference in Birmingham next month, states: "Local councils should have the right and ability to raise additional taxes that they see appropriate for their circumstances.

"Councils could also raise revenues to cover the costs of specific extra costs and services that they bear.

"For example, a small per drink surcharge in town centre bars and pubs, borne by drinkers themselves, could offset additional policing and health costs that drinkers impose on councils, and therefore residents, in many towns and cities."

There were no further details on how the proposal might work.

BBPA spokesman Neil Williams told the Telegraph: "British pubgoers already pay some of the highest taxes in the world.

"Typically a third of the price of a pint - one pound - is tax, and so the last thing struggling pubs need is yet more taxes."

A Liberal Democrat spokesman said: "This is not party policy but merely an example of how councils could raise revenues to cover extra costs. It is a small part of a wider consultation into local government funding."

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