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Dunedin City Council – Kaunihera-a-rohe o Otepoti
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Liquor licensing regulatory agencies

There are several regulatory bodies that are responsible for ensuring Dunedin's liquor licences are managed properly. This page explains some of their functions.

Dunedin Alcohol Partnership

We carry out our role in conjunction with the Dunedin Police and Public Health South. This is a formal arrangement with the three authorities jointly referred to as the Dunedin Alcohol Partnership.

While the Alcohol Regulatory and Licensing Authority has overall responsibility for alcohol licensing in New Zealand, the District Licensing Committee (DLC) is responsible for the local area. The Act has the Police, Medical Officer of Health and the Council’s Licensing Inspectors as the regulatory  agencies responsible for the day to day monitoring and management of alcohol issues in the Dunedin area. They work closely together with the industry and other relevant groups to work towards achieving the object of the Act.

Alcohol Regulatory and Licensing Authority (ARLA)

ARLA has the overall responsibility for alcohol licensing. It comprises a District Court Judge as the Chairperson and usually two other members. Functions include:

  • determining/considering applications for variation, suspension or cancellation of on, off or club licences and managers' certificates referred to them by the Police or Licensing Inspectors
  • determining appeals arising from decisions of DLCs
  • determining applications referred to it by DLCs
  • giving direction on matters to DLCs
  • considering the suspension or cancellation of licences in respect of certain offences referred to them by the Police.

District Licensing Committee (DLC)

The DLC is an independent sub-committee of the territorial local authority (or local Council) for a particular area. Functions include:

  • determining all applications for licences (on, off, club and special licences) and managers' certificates, both new, renewal and variation applications
  • determining temporary authority applications for on and off licences
  • appointing one or more Licensing Inspectors.

DLC membership

The DLC comprises a Chairperson and committee members from the Dunedin community.

Committee Representatives

  • Colin Weatherall - Chairperson
  • Andrew Noone - Deputy Chairperson
  • David Benson-Pope
  • Peter Burrows
  • Wayne Idour
  • Colin Lind
  • Tanya Surrey

Council Representatives

  • Cr Mike Lord
  • Cr Lee Vandervis
  • Cr Aaron Hawkins

Licensing Inspector

One or more licensing inspectors are appointed by the DCC. Functions include:

  • reporting on all applications for licences and managers’ certificates to the DLC, or in some situations, ARLA
  • monitoring licensed premises' compliance within the requirements of the Act and reporting to the DLC
  • power of entry to any licensed premises at any reasonable time (the inspector must carry a warrant)
  • ability to require to see the premises' licence or any records reasonably required to establish compliance with the Act
  • ability to apply to the ARLA for the variation, suspension or cancellation of a licence
  • power to issue an infringement notice to any person alleged to have committed certain offences under the Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act.

The Police

The Police have a statutory role under the Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act to inquire into all alcohol licence applications and monitor all licensed premises to ensure compliance with the Act. Functions include:

  • inquiring into all applications for licences and managers' certificates
  • monitoring licensed premises' compliance with the requirements of the Act and reporting to the DLC
  • power of entry to any licensed premises at any reasonable time, or at any time if they have reasonable grounds to suspect that an offence is being committed
  • power to require to see the premises' licence or any records reasonably required to establish compliance with the requirements of the Act
  • power to order the closure of a licensed premises in the case of riot or fighting, etc
  • power to apply to ARLA for the variation, suspension or cancellation of a licence
  • duty to advise ARLA when a licensee or manager has been convicted of an offence relating to the sale and supply of alcohol to minors, unauthorised sale or supply, sale or supply to intoxicated persons or allowing persons to become intoxicated
  • power to issue an infringement notice to any person alleged to have committed certain offences under the Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act
  • power to seize alcohol and containers without a warrant for the purpose of analysis.

Medical Officer of Health

The Medical Officer of Health for a particular area is also involved as a statutory reporting agency. In Dunedin the Medical Officer of Health is often represented by a Health Promotion Adviser of the Public Health Service. Functions include:

  • inquiring into all applications for on, off, club and special licences
  • monitoring and report on licensed premises' compliance with the requirements of the Act and report to the DLC.

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