Despite widespread criticism from multiple sectors of the community and a mounting pile of evidence that they don’t actually do what they’re supposed to do, Queensland looks to be moving ahead with their own set of lockout laws.

While local MPs like Billy Gordon and Shane Knuth claimed they would be striking down the state government’s proposed 1am lockout legislation, the Labor Party is expected to table a revised set of laws in Parliament this week.

But all of the criticism about the legislation’s impact on local nightlife aside, the tweaked laws are simply confusing, leaving Queensland punters at the mercy of what is an increasingly convoluted set of legislation.

The amendments to the laws see Labor ditching their goal of implementing a 1am lockout and 3am closing time across the state to instead institute a statewide 2am last-drinks policy, apparently without a lockout requirement.

However — and this is where the confusion comes in — nightclub precincts around the state would be able to apply for an extension of hours in order to serve last drinks at 3am, if they then adhere to a 1am lockout.

Punters would effectively be given about half an hour to finish their last drinks, with the Courier-Mail reporting the Office Of Liquor & Gaming Regulation are focusing on preventing binge-drinking and final call exploitation of service.

Speaking to the ABC, Shadow Attorney-General Ian Walker said the legislation will leave Queenslanders not innately familiar with the various designated entertainment precincts scratching their heads, if the laws come into effect on 1st July 2016.

“Yon’t know whether you’re going to a venue that ceases trading at 2 o’clock or if you’re a 3 o’clock venue that in turn locks you out at 1 o’clock,” Walker said. He added that the policy is so confusing punters will need an app to guide them.

“Walker said the policy is so confusing punters will need an app to guide them.”

Walker also claimed the proposed laws are overly narrow, saying they fail to address several key areas of concern, including drug use, Safe Night Precinct policing levels, and drug and alcohol education.

Nick Braban of Our Nightlife Queensland told the ABC the government had failed to consult with the local community when drafting the laws and that Queensland’s already-declining assault rates suggest more legislation is unnecessary.

“Today we have seen a convoluted statement from the government, simply rehashing a policy which has no support from varied stakeholders across the state,” he said.

“An 11th-hour deal has been done with one sector of the hospitality industry, completely ignoring pubs, live music venues, small bars and nightclubs.”

“What’s being put forward by the government will kill our entertainment precincts as it has done in Sydney, because young people will fail to see the value in coming.”

“It simply won’t be worth their time or money. We hope that the government has a plan for the displacement of people partying in the suburbs; however, we are certain they do not.”

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As part of the amended laws, venues will be able to apply for “up to 12” different special permits a year to extend their trading hours on special occasions and venues serving food or non-alcoholic drinks will be able to stay open past 2am.

Simon Turner, director of nightlife safety watchdog Just Let It Go, said the laws are a step in the wrong direction and that there are simply “too many ifs, buts and maybes” to make the laws a highly effective safety measure.

“Exemptions and concessions are already being canvassed, casinos are excluded, and suburban clubs and pubs don’t trade that late anyway,” he explained, suggesting several measures that would actually improve nightlife safety.

“Relocating taxi ranks, providing free wi-fi at the ranks, developing the capacities of rank attendants, [and] better communications between clubs and ranks are just a few simple yet potentially highly effective measures to improve entertainment precincts and reduce the risk of harm to young people.”

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