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Govt overriding Auckland’s RWC administration - déjà vu

Govt overriding Auckland’s RWC administration - déjà vu

Auckland Council is now lobbying Wellington hoping the Government will not intervene again over their administration of Rugby World Cup matters, as they did in 2011 when the Government took control of the waterfront, says Auckland Councillor Cameron Brewer.

“There is a sense of déjà vu in all of this. Auckland’s over-zealous interpretation and enforcement of the 2012 liquor legislation is potentially forcing the Government’s hand at Rugby World Cup time again. No wonder the leadership at Auckland Council is now pleading Wellington not to embarrass and undermine them.

“Last time it was about Wellington taking control of Auckland’s waterfront. Now the Government is contemplating taking control around special licences. This follows Auckland Council’s interpretation going somewhat beyond what was ever intended with the special licence provisions inside the Sale & Supply of Alcohol Act. Let’s be real, it’s sadly Auckland that’s causing the worst headaches on this issue.

“I believe such major international sporting events like Olympic Games and World Cups should be viewed as special events in their own right and not require a special licence and all the cost, time and energy that such a process requires. The law should be changed, because Auckland is interpreting it way beyond what was ever intended.

“Auckland Council is the now running around telling licenced premises wanting a special licence that at least 50% tickets be pre-sold, a cover charge be introduced, special decorations be put up, patrons dress up in costume, live music, quizzes, guest speakers, and/or themed food. Putting up so many silly specific and costly hoops and hurdles was never the intention of the 2012 legislative provisions.

“I actually believe making people pay in advance and wear fancy dress probably only gets people more amped up, stay up all night, and in need of more Dutch courage. You’re hardly going to set your alarm, wake up in the middle of the night, put your costume on and drive down for a quiet beer at the local. These rules are ill-conceived and could have the reverse effect of what’s intended.”

“I encourage the Government to once again instigate some martial law over Auckland’s administration of the upcoming Rugby World Cup, and amend the Sale of Supply of Alcohol Act to exclude the forthcoming tournament only because sadly some authorities are going overboard with what they’re insisting licensed premises have to do to comply,” says Cameron Brewer.

ENDS

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