13 May 2015

Council votes to cut alcohol hours

1:14 pm on 13 May 2015

Auckland Council has voted to move forward with cutting the hours people can buy alcohol at supermarkets and bottle stores.

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Photo: 123RF

The council has been considering its draft Local Alcohol Policy, which will give it the power to set its own rules about when and where alcohol can be sold.

Sales at off-licences and supermarkets are being reduced to 12 hours a day - between 9am and 9pm.

Opening hours for bars and on-licences in the city will remain until 4am while, outside of the city centre, the closing time will be 3am.

The policy also introduces a two-year ban on new off-licences in areas deemed most at risk of alcohol harm.

Cameron Brewer was the only councillor to oppose the plan, calling it a blunt instrument.

Another councillor, Bill Cashmore, said the change in hours was a good move.

"How much alcohol is really sold beyond those hours that we've put down - 9am to 9pm?

"By reducing back to 9pm, can we stop those bad decision-makers, who wander down to the alcohol store at quarter to 10 and buy that other box, or that bottle of [Jim] Beam, or whatever?

"So those were our parameters. It's about minimising the potential for harm."