Local Alcohol Policy

The Local Alcohol Policy (LAP) is a tool that Councils can develop and introduce through the Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act 2012 (the Act) to suit the local licensing environment.  It can be used to regulate the number, location, trading hours and licence conditions of licensed premises. Once developed it must be approved by the Alcohol Regulatory and Licensing Authority (ARLA).

How has the LAP been developed?

The Act allows councils to develop a LAP for their territorial areas. The object of the Act is focused around reducing alcohol related harm.

The Mackenzie, Timaru and Waimate District Councils jointly prepared a draft Local Alcohol Policy. In preparing the policy, the views of the community about alcohol licensing matters have been sought through community surveys, and discussions with key stakeholders, including Police, the Medical Officer of Health, industry representatives and health and community groups. Following consultation and hearings on the Draft Policy (and subsequent changes) it becomes a Provisional Local Alcohol Policy (PLAP). Once any appeals against the PLAP are resolved, the Councils and ARLA are satisfied with the LAP and it is adopted as the LAP. The PLAP became the LAP on 21 December 2015. The Councils then set a date for the LAP to come into force, and once that date is publicly notified, it comes into force on the date set by the Councils. The only parts of the LAP which do not come in to force on that date are those provisions in the LAP relating to maximum trading hours or one way door policies. The date passed by resolution for the LAP to come into force is 24 March 2016. The provisions relating to one way door policies and maximum trading hours will come into force 90 days after public notification of the adoption of the LAP. This will be in June 2016.

Why has a Local Alcohol Policy been developed?

The Councils of the region have decided to produce a LAP in order to provide locally relevant policies for licensing within our respective Districts. The Councils recognised that within the community there is considerable concern about the effects of excessive and inappropriate drinking. The preliminary consultation and research demonstrated that there is a desire for the setting of local policies on licensing of premises, to best serve our Districts. The Council views a LAP as an important tool to assist the District Licensing Committee in making its decisions and to help in the achievement of the object of the Act.

What is the Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act 2012?

Legislation reforming New Zealand's alcohol laws was passed by Parliament on 11 December 2012, received Royal assent on 18 December 2012 and is now law. The new Act created changes for licence holders, holders of manager certificates, territorial authorities, enforcement agencies and the public. The Act came into force in stages, to allow regulations to be made in 2013.

For more information go online to www.legislation.govt.nz and search Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act 2012.

The object of the Act is that:

  1. the sale, supply, and consumption of alcohol should be undertaken safely and responsibly; and
  2. the harm caused by the excessive or inappropriate consumption of alcohol should be minimised.

Under the Act, the harm caused by the excessive or inappropriate consumption of alcohol includes—

  1. any crime, damage, death, disease, disorderly behaviour, illness, or injury, directly or indirectly caused, or directly or indirectly contributed to, by the excessive or inappropriate consumption of alcohol; and
  2. any harm to society generally or the community, directly or indirectly caused, or directly or indirectly contributed to, by any crime, damage, death, disease, disorderly behaviour, illness, or injury of a kind described in paragraph (a).

How often will the LAP be reviewed?

Legislative requirements mean the LAP must be reviewed every six years, although Councils can chose to do this sooner if they wish.

The Key Points in the LAP

Proximity to sensitive facilities

Discretionary condition restrict new ON and OFF licenced premises to be at least 100 metres from any Kindergarten, Early Childhood Centre, Primary or Secondary School.

Discretionary conditions

  • Restriction on the consumption of alcohol in outdoor areas after midnight (0000hours) for ON licence.
  • Taverns, Hotels, Bars and Nightclubs to provide dedicated door security staff on Thursday, Friday, Saturday nights and for any event occurring with 100 or more people attending.
  • No shots or double spirit mixes to be sold from 30 minutes of closing in Taverns, Hotels, Bars and Nightclubs.

Off-licence maximum trading hours

(Does not come in to force until 90 days after rest of LAP comes in to force)

  • Hours of Operation for off-licence premises proposed to be 7am to 9pm
  • Hotel in-bedroom (mini bar) sales: Monday to Sunday 24 hours per day

On-licence maximum trading hours

(Does not come in to force until 90 days after rest of LAP comes in to force)

  • Hours of Operation for on-licence premises (Function Centres, Restaurants and Cafes) proposed to remain the same – 7am to 1am (the following day)
  • Hours of Operation for on-licence premises (Taverns, Hotels, Bars and Nightclubs) proposed to remain the same – 7am to 3am (the following day)

Club maximum trading hours

(Does not come in to force until 90 days after rest of LAP comes in to force)

Hours of operation for club licence premises proposed to be 9am to 1am (the following day).

One way door

(Does not come in to force until 90 days after rest of LAP comes in to force)

All licenced premises open to 3:00am shall apply a one way door restriction at 2:00am on Friday, Saturday and Sunday morning and for any event exceeding 100 people at the premise.

Queries

If you have questions on the policy, please contact Paul Cooper, Environmental Services Manager (Timaru District Council).