Community Say On Alcohol Licensing Getting Easier

Published: Thu 11 Jul 2024 04:48 PM
Recent changes to the alcohol laws have made it easier for communities to have a say on alcohol licence applications, and now people can sign up to be notified by email when an application is lodged with the Council.
Kāpiti Coast District Council environmental standards manager Richard Hopkins said the previous government amended the Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act to make the whole process of objecting to alcohol licence applications much easier and less daunting.
“The hearings are now less formal, and more welcoming for people not used to dealing with legal processes. The objection period has been extended from 15 working days to 25, and now anyone can object, instead of just those with a particular interest like close neighbours,” he said.
Council has also been looking at how it can streamline the process for licence applicants and the community, he said.
“Licence applications still have to be publicly notified on the Council website, which we do automatically and for free through the application process, but we no longer require applicants to pay for public notices in a physical newspaper.
“With the demise of traditional community papers, this was becoming a bit hit and miss. Many other councils don’t require it now either.
“But the community still needs to know when alcohol licences are being applied for, so we’re encouraging people with an interest to sign up for links to the public notices to be emailed direct to their inbox.
“You can select the kind of notifications you wish to receive, such as for off-licence (e.g. bottle store or grocery store) applications, on-licences (e.g. restaurant or cafe), or club licences,” Mr Hopkins said.
You can also sign up for other kinds of public notice emails, such as for resource consents or general notices which include things like road closures across the district.
Mr Hopkins said anyone needing help to object to an alcohol licence application should contact Community Law.

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