News, Events and Culture

Council backs the appeal of the decision to licence another liquor outlet in Cloverlea

Monday April 29 2013

Earlier this year the Authority decided in favour of allowing Big Barrel a licence despite widespread concern from neighbours.

Tākaro Ward representative, Councillor Tangi Utikere, says he is making the appeal in his capacity as a Palmerston North City Councillor and as a representative of the local Tākaro Ward.

"My community is against the proliferation of liquor outlets because of the subsequential pain caused by the increased availability of liquor and its damaging and dangerous effects on neighbourhoods, families, friends and individuals."

"My concern is that our community's voice has not been sufficiently heard or acknowledged by the Authority and as such I believe an appeal to the High Court is in line with defending the public interest. I'm delighted my fellow ward and wider city representatives agree and support the appeal."

The appeal is being made on seven grounds including:

  • The failure by the Authority to evaluate the evidence against the objectives of the Sale of Liquor Act 1989 which is to reduce liquor abuse.
  • The Authority erroneously looked for a causal nexus between the evidence and proliferation of outlets. The Authority has extensive evidence regarding the correlation between availability of liquor and liquor abuse and the elevated risk caused by concentration of outlets in neighbourhoods.
  • The Authority disregarded the proliferation of outlets.
  • The environmental context (the proposed premise is located near a school) in which the proposed outlet is to be situated was ignored in the decision.
  • Signage conditions cannot be imposed under the Sale of Liquor Act 1989 and therefore past practice and intended future practice in regards to advertising as a means of mitigating the effects of potential harm or risk of liquor abuse. Therefore the Authority should not have taken into account signage mitigation in the decision.
  • The Authority failed to apply its own specialist experience and the literature
    relating to proliferation and risk.

Palmerston North City Council chief executive Paddy Clifford says Council was unable to appeal the decision because it did not object to the initial application.

"At the time, staff advice to Council was to let the process follow its normal course however individual Councillors, including Cr Utikere lodged submissions."

"As a rule, only those who make submissions to the Authority can appeal its decisions."

At the Extraordinary Council meeting on Monday 22 April Councillors considered legal advice from Cooper Rapley and voted in favour of supporting the appeal.

Mayor Jono Naylor says the support of the appeal is estimated to cost $40,000, including a $5,000 application fee.

"The cost is simply unaffordable for most individuals and organisations in the vicinity of the proposed outlet," says Mayor Naylor. "Councillors, voted to support Cr Utikere because we believe it is in the best interest of the residents of Tākaro and indeed any community that is facing similar challenges."