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Fun Police Strike at Wellington City Council

Press Release – Affordable Wellington

Fun Police Strike at Wellington City Council Ineffective, punitive, anti-business and anti-fun. Thats how Affordable Wellington Onslow-Western ward candidate Phil Howison describes the draft Local Alcohol Policy and draft Alcohol Management Strategy, …
Fun Police Strike at Wellington City Council

Ineffective, punitive, anti-business and anti-fun. That’s how Affordable Wellington Onslow-Western ward candidate Phil Howison describes the draft Local Alcohol Policy and draft Alcohol Management Strategy, which are set to force off-licenses to close at 9 pm, while also forcing bars outside a designated inner-city area to close earlier. “This policy will hurt local businesses and restrict the development of vibrant new entertainment areas outside the Courtenay-Cuba precinct, harming Wellington’s reputation as a vibrant and colourful destination”.

The Wellington City Council has passed a vote to open the idea up to public consultation in an effort to prevent pre-loading. Mr. Howison says, “I can’t see how this move will make any difference whatsoever. Pre-loaders will simply buy their alcohol a bit earlier. The Council are proposing to punish responsible drinkers in order to deal with a reckless minority, and it won’t even work.”

“Those who are determined to drink alcohol irresponsibly will always find a way to get around the rules. Steps taken by local authorities to reduce behaviours through regulation will inevitably result in unintended consequences. Set on-license closing times in our smaller towns results in hordes of intoxicated persons being forced onto the street all at once, leading to violence and property damage. Moves to restrict off-license purchases and suburban closing times will also have unintended effects.”

“Restricting 5 am closing times to bars located between Courtenay Place and Cuba Street will lead to increased property values and rents within that area, while penalising other bars and property owners. The proposal will force Wellington nightlife to remain static, removing the potential for the growth of vibrant new entertainment areas in other parts of the CBD”.

Phil Howison says that Council regulation is unlikely to bring about a change in drinking culture. “The focus should be on individuals setting their own positive social standards and people looking out for their mates. I urge residents and business owners who are concerned about the proposed changes to make their views known to the Council”.

Ends

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