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Shop Trading Hours Horse-Play Disappointing

New Zealand First Leader Winston Peters is disappointed that New Zealand First’s amendments to the shop trading legislation that would have given local councils the power to make decisions about Easter Sunday trading have been defeated by his parliamentary colleagues.

National, Labour, the Alliance, Act and the Greens in Parliament last night appeared to have rejected the amendment to the Shop Trading Hours Bill proposed by Mr Peters, despite undertakings that they would consult over any amendments to the bill.

“This is a major disappointment for Tauranga and for the workings of MMP. If passed this bill would have allowed Tauranga City Council and other councils to open shops on Easter Sunday, if councils believe that ratepayers wanted it.

“Now it will be impossible for legislation to be passed before Easter, meaning that we will have to wait yet another year before such legislation can be brought into effect.

Mr Peters has been trying since 1997 to amend legislation to allow Tauranga shops to open in exceptional circumstances if the Tauranga District Council moved to permit it.

“Once again central government is being allowed to make decisions that rightly belong with local communities in Tauranga and around New Zealand,” concluded Mr Peters


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