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

 

CPAG: Government Spends Over $100K Pursuing Beneficiary

For the past fifteen years, Kathryn, now in her fifties and living alone with chronic ill health on a benefit, has been challenging the decision by the MSD that she has to pay back $117,000. She has no assets or savings and cannot afford to pay for fresh food or therapy that would improve her health. More>>

ALSO:

Labour: National’s Cuts Shave $100K Off KiwiSaver By Retirement

New analysis shows National’s constant cuts to KiwiSaver will reduce the average worker’s retirement savings by $100,000 over their working life, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says... Since coming to office it has made five separate cuts to the scheme." More>>

ALSO:

Auckland: Transport Operators Switch From SuperGold To AT HOP Cards

Seniors using Auckland’s public transport will need to use their AT HOP cards from today but Auckland Transport has requested its operators to show understanding for those customers yet to complete the switch from SuperGold cards. More>>

ALSO:

Crime Stats: Burglary Up 11.9%

“While burglary rates are still below that of recent years, there has been an increase of more than 10 per cent over the past 12 months, which is of concern to Police and something we are determined to tackle,” says Police Commissioner Mike Bush. More>>

ALSO:

Help: Lifeline Aotearoa Fighting For Survival

Lifeline Aotearoa has announced it only has enough money to run for one more year. By 30 June 2017, all available sustainability reserves and funds from a new mortgage on its Auckland property will be exhausted. More>>

ALSO:

Overseas Investment: Auditor-General To Examine OIO

The Auditor-General is to examine how the Overseas Investment Office collects and manages information following a request from the parliament's finance and expenditure committee. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Bill English Living In Denial

The working poor have been a direct byproduct of the economic policies in vogue for the past 30 years or more, all over the Western world... That anger was evident in the Brexit vote, and it underlies the support for Donald Trump in the United States. More>>

ALSO:

Final Reading Of Parental Leave Bill: Families With New Babies Victims Of Veto

“For the first time ever, a Bill will have a third reading debate and no vote will be taken at the end because the National Government has used its veto – an extreme measure against families,” says the Bill’s sponsor, Labour MP Sue Moroney. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news