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

Gordon Campbell:
On The Greens Proposal To Gradually Lift The Minimum Wage

Heading into the election home stretch, voters have a clear choice about the best way to help low and middle income New Zealanders. They can do so by gradually lifting the minimum wage (as the Greens propose) or by a small tax cut, as the government seems about to announce.

The minimum wage boost – by 75 cents an hour to $15 in December, and then by gradual annual increments to $18 an hour by 2017 – that the Greens are talking about is just one part of a packet of employment measures that would include scrapping youth rates and the 90 day trial period, introducing a redundancy package of four weeks, offsetting any abatement effect of the policy package for those receiving Working For Families, and finally… ditching the exception made by the government (during the Hobbit negotiations) for workers in the screen industry, which denies them normal workplace safeguards and entitlements. More>>

 

Parliament Today:

2014 General Election: Voting Period Begins

The first votes for the 2014 general election will be cast today, Wednesday 3 September, as advance voting begins ahead of election day on Saturday 20 September. More>>

ALSO:

Two Dead, One Injured: Suspect Charged After Ashburton Shooting

Russell John Tully has appeared in Christchurch District Court. Tully has been remanded in custody on charges of murder of Peg Noble and Leigh Cleveland and attempted murder of Lindy Curtis. More>>

ALSO:

John Key Press Conference: Ashburton Shootings, Judith Collins Inquiry

Prime Minister John Key has delayed the release of Nationals’ fiscal policy in light of this morning’s shooting at a Work and Income office in Ashburton... Key also answered questions about Judith Collins, and confirmed that independent inquiry will be held with regard to allegations made against Collins. More>>

ALSO:

Internet MANA: Georgina Beyer Rocks The Waka

“There is now, and always will be, a range of views about many issues within our movement and members are free to express them, but Georgina’s views on Kim Dotcom are not shared by the MANA Movement leadership or the vast majority of MANA members and supporters around the country” states MANA Candidate for Waiariki, Annette Sykes. More>>

ALSO:

IGIS Update: Inquiry Into Release Of NZSIS Information

The Inquiry would be conducted in private and individuals would appear before her separately over a period of more than a week. She does not intend to name those summoned to give evidence until her report is published. “I can confirm that all persons summoned will be required to appear under oath...” More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell:
On John Key’s ‘Blame It On Judith’ Strategy

Right now, Prime Minister John Key seems intent on limiting the scope of any inquiry into his government’s dealings with Cameron Slater. The declared aim is to make that inquiry solely about Judith Collins’ behavior with respect to the Serious Fraud Office. More>>

ALSO:

Maori Council Lawyers' Statement: Supreme Court Decision On Maori Water Rights

“…the Supreme Court refused to give Pouakani people what they asked for, but may have given them something much, much better instead… the Supreme Court has questioned whether the Crown owns the River at all.” More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Debate, And The Collins Accusation

Debating is a peculiar discipline in that what you say is less important than how you’re saying it. Looking poised, being articulate and staying on topic generally wins the day – and on that score, Labour leader David Cunliffe won what turned out to be a bruising encounter with Prime Minister John Key last night on TVNZ. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news