Queenstown Mayor Clive Geddes says the resort town has reached its limit of bars and restaurants selling alcohol.
Queenstown Lakes District Council wants more powers to refuse licences that threaten "quiet and good order" and in places where it judges there are already too many bars.
Mr Geddes says there are already 90 bars and restaurants in the CBD.
However, the head of a company which runs five bars says the council should have to consult the community before refusing licences.
Good Group chief executive Russell Gray says all views need to be put on the table before the council makes licensing decisons.