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Further alcohol strategy consultation for CBD

Further alcohol strategy consultation for CBD liquor licences

Aucklanders have another chance to give their views on a specific section of Auckland City's draft alcohol strategy addressing hours of operation for licensed premises in the CBD.

Councillor Graeme Mulholland, chairperson of the Public Safety and Community Order Committee says "We are seeking to balance the need for a vibrant city with the provision of a framework which will reduce alcohol-related harm in the city, provide council with a review process for licensed premises and provide flexibility for licensees.

“I urge everyone from licensees to people who go out in the CBD to put their ideas and concerns in writing during the next month to assist our decision making,” says Mr Mulholland.

The draft alcohol strategy has been largely adopted by council but based on feedback from the initial consultation last year, the section that covers hours of licensed premises in the CBD has been revised and requires further consultation.

Currently any bar, restaurant or tavern in the CBD can get a 24/7 licence. There are 710 licensed premises in the greater CBD area, with 150 concentrated between Fort Street and the Viaduct Harbour alone.

Auckland City is asking for submissions on the following proposals:

- licensed premises, excluding entertainment facilities, will be able to apply for a 3am closing. Licensed premises who show exemplary management practices can apply for a 24/7 licence

- if complaints are received about the extended hours, the District Licensing Agency can recommend to the Liquor Licensing Authority that the liquor licence operating hours revert to 3am

- existing liquor licensees in the CBD will continue to operate with 24/7 liquor licences. However, if complaints are received against existing licences, then the District Licensing Agency will also recommend to the Liquor Licensing Authority that the liquor licence operating hours revert to 3am

- entertainment facilities (nightclubs) will be able to apply for a 24/7 licence

- off licence premises will have a 1am closing, excluding supermarkets, which will be able to apply for 24/7 licences.

Public consultation runs from 5 August to 5 September. People can have their say by filling in a submission form online at www.aucklandcity.govt.nz/strategies or posting their comments to Auckland City, community planning, Private Bag 92 516, Wellesley Street, Auckland.

The results of the consultation will be collated in September and people will also have the opportunity to make oral submissions. The final alcohol strategy will go to both the Public Safety and Community Order and the Planning and Regulatory committees in October or November and, pending their decisions, go to council in November or December for consideration.

The alcohol strategy has been strongly influenced by central government’s national alcohol strategy and has had input from a number of external agencies including the Hospitality Association of New Zealand, Alcohol Healthwatch, Alcohol Advisory Council of New Zealand and the New Zealand Police.

ENDS

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