Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 


Rotorua gets tough on psychoactive substance sales

News Release 

Tuesday 18 February 2014

Rotorua gets tough on psychoactive substance sales

“There’s no place for the sale of psychoactive substances in Rotorua.” That is the message Rotorua District Council (RDC) wants to make clear through a new policy which would severely restrict the sale of the products to the full extent of powers available under current legislation.

At this morning’s meeting of the council’s Strategy, Policy & Finance Committee councillors discussed a draft Local Approved Products Policy that would limit opportunities for retailers of psychoactive substances to operate in Rotorua.

While legislation does not allow for a total ban on the sale of the substances, it does give councils the right to set restrictions on where they can and cannot be legally sold, including consideration of proximity to sensitive locations such as schools, community facilities and churches.

Councils can also determine the maximum number of retailers permitted to operate and set a distance between such premises.

At this morning’s meeting a draft 2014 Local Approved Products Policy (LAPP) for psychoactive substances was approved and will now be the subject of a public consultation programme starting in March so community views can be heard.

Strategy, Policy & Finance Committee chair Merepeka Raukawa-Tait said the clear message that sellers of harmful psychoactive substances should take from today’s decision is that they are not wanted in Rotorua.

“Current holders of temporary licences should also think very seriously about closing up shop or moving out of town. We don’t want you here and we’re not going to make it easy for you to operate.

“Our draft policy does everything we can do under existing legislation and it sends a strong message that we don’t need these insidious products being sold in our district.

“It shows we care about our citizens’ health and safety and that we are concerned about the costs that our community incurs as a result of these substances being used.

“Today’s decision supports our Rotorua 2030 goals, specifically around providing safe neighbourhoods and an inviting inner city area.

“However, our view is that the legislation does not go far enough and we should be able to implement an outright ban of the sale of psychoactive substances in our district. It’s clear there’s a mounting body of support from Rotorua residents for exactly that to happen so we will be advocating strongly to the government for more powers than those currently available to us,” said Mrs Raukawa-Tait.

Under proposals in the new draft LAPP, retail outlets would be restricted to the inner city only. However the four existing outlets with interim licences in the CBD would not be able to continue operating from their current premises and would be left with very few options to relocate to.

The council’s LAPP proposals would initially allow a maximum of just three premises to be licensed, but a ‘sinking lid’ policy would mean those numbers would be reduced over time as no new licences would be approved in the future.

The council will also recommend to the government that the hours of sale for psychoactive products be restricted to 9am to 2.30pm Mondays to Fridays to limit exposure to vulnerable groups such as school children.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

PARLIAMENT TODAY:

Royals: The Prince Of Wales And Duchess Of Cornwall To Visit

Prime Minister John Key welcomes today’s announcement that the Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall will visit New Zealand in November. This will be the second joint visit for Their Royal Highnesses to New Zealand. More>>

ALSO:

Tracey Martin Replaced: Ron Mark Is New New Zealand First Deputy Leader

Clayton Mitchell was the successful candidate for the Associate Whip position. Winston Peters was re-elected as Leader by the Caucus. Ron Mark was elected as the Deputy Leader with effect from 10am, Friday, 3rd July. More>>

ALSO:

Rebuild Rebrand: "Regenerate Christchurch" To Replace CERA

The regeneration of Christchurch will be the city’s focus for the next five years as local leadership progressively takes control of the rebuild, Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee says. More>>

ALSO:

Nauru: Scholars Urge Minister To Act On Deteriorating Democracy

“Since the 2013 election in Nauru, there has been a series of disturbing developments on the islands that indicate a severe deterioration in the state of its parliamentary democracy and in the rule of law,” say the scholars. More>>

ALSO:

Foreign Affairs: NZ Begins Presidency Of UN Security Council

Prime Minister John Key has welcomed the start of New Zealand’s month-long Presidency of the United Nations Security Council in New York. More>>

ALSO:

Labour: Cash For Charter Schools, Mould For State Schools

“Recently released financial statements show the Whangarei charter school He Puna Marama received $3.9 million in government funding to the end of last year. Yet their audited accounts show they only spent $1.4 million on education, leaving almost $2.5 million over two years unaccounted for." More>>

ALSO:

Kiwirail Plans Shift From Electric: National Urged Not To Take Backwards Step

The National Government shouldn’t drag New Zealand backwards by replacing its climate friendly electric trains with carbon-polluting diesel trains, the Green Party said today. More>>

ALSO:

Capital Connection:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news