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 Bank Scandals (And Air Crashes)

Last month, the Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC) filed proceedings against Westpac over activities that have some distinct echoes of the Libor scandal. More>>

Budget: Health Funding Must Keep Up With Need

NZNO: “The nursing team has been doing more with less for years. It’s getting to the point that we’re really worried about our colleagues, our patients, our jobs and the level of health care available for people in our country." More>>

ALSO:

Emissions Inventory: Time For The Government To Do The Right Thing

It’s time for the National Government to step up and do the right thing to reduce climate pollution as data shows New Zealand’s greenhouse gas emissions are higher than ever, the Green Party said today. More>>

ALSO:

Budget 2016: More Partnership Schools To Open

Seven new schools will join the eight Partnership Schools already open, along with further new schools opening in 2017. “The growth of this policy is a reflection of the high level of interest from educators and community leaders,” Mr Seymour says. More>>

ALSO:

No Correspondence With English: Did Brownlee Make Up Sale Of Navy Ships ‘On The Hoof?’

Having revealed that several Royal New Zealand Navy vessels have not left port in years, New Zealand First is now asking the Minister of Defence to prove he did not come up with the idea of selling HMNZS Taupo and Pukaki until the media asked him. More>>

Housing Plans: Labour- Abolish Auckland Urban Boundary
The Government should rule out any possibility of an urban growth boundary in Auckland Council’s Unitary Plan if it is serious about fixing the housing crisis. More>>
Greens - State House Solution
The Homes Not Cars policy allows Housing New Zealand to retain its dividend and, in addition, would refund its tax, to spend on the emergency building of around 450 new state houses. More>>

ALSO:

Houses And Taxes: Post-Cabinet, Pre-Budget Press Conference

The Prime Minister said that the pre-budget announcements showed that his Government is “investing in a growing economy”. He re-affirmed the National Government’s commitment to lowering personal tax rates but that any such change must fit with the fiscal reality of the time. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news