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

 


Council Supports Swift Response to Legal Highs

Council Supports Swift Response to Legal Highs

11 MARCH 2014

For Immediate Release


Hamilton City Council’s Psychoactive Substances Policy, which was adopted by Council on 27 February 2014, will be enforced by the Ministry of Health.

Mayor Julie Hardaker says she is pleased the Government has responded to the needs and concerns of our community and congratulated the Ministry of Health for taking immediate action.

The Council’s policy identified the Central City as the preferred location from which legal highs could be sold with a number of sensitive sites identified.

The Ministry of Health, based on council’s policy, will suspend those temporary licences issued for 21 days.

Hamilton Mayor Julie Hardaker says “Hamilton is a city for families and it’s not OK to have people smoking a drug on the street in full view of children.”

“As a council, we have been virtually powerless to deal with the damage legal highs have caused our community and we are all grateful that the Ministry will now take action” added Mayor Hardaker.

Ms Hardaker said Cr Angela O’Leary, the Chair of the Strategy and Policy Committee had led the Council through the policy process and the news today that the policy will be enforced was a reflection of her hard work on this issue.

Hamilton’s electorate MPs Tim Macindoe and David Bennett both welcomed the news that the Ministry of Health is giving effect to the council’s policy.

“We understand the frustrations people have been experiencing around the damage legal highs have caused our local community, and we have been advocating strongly in Wellington and locally for the Ministry of Health to take immediate action to implement Hamilton City Council’s Psychoactive Substances Policy.


BACKGROUND

Key facts
• Hamilton City Council’s Psychoactive Substances Policy identifies the central city for where legal high retailers can be located.
• There are currently eight interim licence holders in our city, five of which are located within the Central City. Under Council’s policy and under the conditions of each interim licence, all of these licences are non-compliant. The Ministry of Health is now giving effect to our policy.
• Taking into consideration the sensitive site buffer zones (retailers need to be at least 100m from a sensitive site), the policy only leaves areas on the outskirts of the Central City for legal high retailers to be located.
• Our understanding is no full licences will be issued by the Ministry of Health until regulations are finalised which we understand will be no later than mid-2015.
• Sensitive sites include:
o any library, museum, community hall or recreational facility,
o any place of worship, school, kindergarten, childcare centre or educational institution,
o any premise occupied by a social welfare agency such as Work and Income or similar agency,
o Civic Square, Garden Place, the Hamilton High/District Court, Embassy Park and the Transport Centre,
o the Waikato river, the river walkway, pharmacies medical centres, key bus stops and stand-alone public toilets.
• Other actions the Council resolved to do included:
o submit on the Psychoactive Substances Regulations in support of enabling area prohibition of Psychoactive Substance sales;
o establish a working group to consider alternative options available to supplement Council's Psychoactive Substances Policy including the issue of the management of anti-social behaviour in public places and taking into account the Central City Transformation Plan. This will include consideration of both a bylaw and changes to the District Plan.


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Parliament Today: State Opening Of Parliament

The House sits at 10.30am today before MPs are summoned to hear the Speech from the Throne in the Legislative Council Chamber.

The speech delivered by the Governor-General on the Government’s behalf outlines its priorities for this Parliament.

After this MPs will return to the House for the presentation of petitions and papers and the introduction of any bills.

The Government has five notices of motion on the Order Paper which can be debated. These relate to relating to the appointment of the Deputy Speaker, Assistant Speakers, the reinstatement of business in a carryover motion and one on “Entities to be deemed public organisations”. More>>

 

Tertiary Education: Students Doing It Tough As Fees Rise Again

The Government is making it increasingly difficult for Kiwis to gain tertiary education as fees continue to rise and access to student support becomes even more restricted, Labour’s Tertiary Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. More>>

ALSO:

Housing, Iraq: PM Press Conference – 20 October 2014

Prime Minister John Key met with press today to discuss:
• Housing prices and redevelopment in Auckland
• Discussions with Tony Abbott on the governmental response to ISIS, and New Zealand’s election to the UN Security Council More>>

ALSO:

Labour: Review Team Named, Leadership Campaign Starts

Labour’s New Zealand Council has appointed Bryan Gould as Convenor of its post-General Election Review. He will be joined on the Review Team by Hon Margaret Wilson, Stacey Morrison and Brian Corban.

ALSO:


Roy Morgan Poll: National Slips, Labour Hits Lows

The first New Zealand Roy Morgan Poll since the NZ Election shows National 43.5% (down 3.54% since the September 20 Election). This isn’t unusual, National support has dropped after each of John Key’s Election victories... However, support for the main opposition Labour Party has crashed to 22.5% (down 2.63% and the lowest support for Labour since the 1914 NZ Election as United Labour). More>>

ALSO:

In On First Round: New Zealand Wins Security Council Seat

Prime Minister John Key has welcomed New Zealand securing a place on the United Nations Security Council for the 2015-16 term. More>>

ALSO:

TPP Leak: Intellectual Property Text Confirms Risk - Jane Kelsey

The US is continuing its assault on generic medicines through numerous proposed changes to patent laws. ‘These are bound to impact on Pharmac if they are accepted’, according to Professor Kelsey... Copyright is another area of ongoing sensitivity... More>>

ALSO:

RMA: Smith Plans Reform To Ease Urban Development

Newly appointed Environment Minister Nick Smith has announced Resource Management Act reform to foster urban development, where high land prices and expensive resource consents are blocking efforts to provide affordable housing. More>>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On New Zealand getting involved (again) in other people's wars

Apparently, the Key government is still pondering how New Zealand will contribute to the fight against Islamic State. Long may it ponder, given the lack of consensus among our allies as to how to fight IS, where to fight it (Syria, Iraq, or both?) and with whose ground troops, pray tell? More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On child poverty, and David Shearer’s latest outburst

The politicisation of (a) the public service and (b) the operations of the Official Information Act have been highlighted by the policy advice package on child poverty that RNZ’s resolute political editor Brent Edwards has finally prised out of the Ministry of Social Development. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On the government’s review of security laws

So the Key government is about to launch a four week review of the ability of our existing legislation to deal with “suspected and returning foreign terrorist fighters, and other violent extremists.”

According to its terms of reference, the review will consider whether the SIS, GCSB and Police are sufficiently able right now to (a) investigate and monitor suspected and returning foreign terrorist fighters… More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news