The Government has chosen not to include alcohol licensing in its plans to devolve new powers to parish and town councillors. Reports at the weekend suggested parish and town councillors will be given sweeping powers to run local neighbourhoods – including licensing of pubs - under “power to the people” plans to be announced this week. However, the subsequent Open Public Services White Paper said the devolution plans include “licensing of certain premises other than for the provision of alcohol”. It will come as some relief to the industry, as there were fears that handing control of alcohol licensing to parish and town councils could mean local residents effectively have a greater say over the process.