Review of Fees for Aberdeenshire Licensing Boards North, South and Central

The Aberdeenshire North, Central and South Divisional Licensing Boards are consulting on proposed amendments to their fees for major variations, transfers and replacement personal licences.

The Licensing Boards have maintained the current fee structure for the last 10 years however this is no longer sustainable and there are proposals for increasing how fees are calculated.
The proposal is to change how fees are calculated. Currently, there is a set fee for a transfer with a variation, without specifying whether that transfer is a major or a minor variation. This means that all applicants are paying the same regardless of how much that application costs to process.

The proposal means that applicants pay for the application they have submitted to be processed. E.g. if a transfer application is required only, then the fee is the transfer fee. If the application is for a transfer and a variation, the applicant pays for the transfer fee plus the appropriate variation fee. The impact is minimal for applicants who apply for a transfer with or without a minor variation. There is some impact for those who wish to apply for a major variation.
Please complete the following questions to let us know your views.

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* 1. Are you a

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* 2. Do you agree that the Licensing Boards should aim to recover their costs as much as possible through their fees?

Proposed Fee Structure as of 1st of November 2019

 Type of Application Current Fee   Proposed Fee  Comment
S.33 & S.34 Transfer  £180.00  £180.00* There is no proposal to increase this fee as the current fee sufficiently covers the costs.
Minor Variation £20.00  £20.00 This fee is set by statute.
Minor Variation Change to Premises Manager  £31.00  £31.00 This fee is set by statute.
Major Variation Fee £200.00  £350.00* This is an increase to match the average processing costs
Replacement Personal Licence  £10.00 £20.00* This is an increase to match costs.

Should an applicant require to apply for a variation at the same time as a transfer, then they will be liable to pay for the transfer fee and the relevant variation fee.

Those fees marked with an asterisk (*) will increase by inflation as set by the Head of Finance annually from 1st April 2021.

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* 3. Do you think that the proposals are a fair way to charge licensing fees?

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* 4. If you answered "No" to Q3, what would you propose instead?

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* 5. By applying inflation to the discretionary element of the fees the fees will gradually increase rather than a sharp increase at every review point. Do you have any comments on the proposal to apply inflation on the fees every year from 1st April 2021?

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