Their report is here. There are 153 recommendations. They include:
- A 50% increase in average excise tax on alcohol
- Purchase age from 18 to 20
- No exemptions for 18 and 19 year olds, even if with parents at a on-license (illegal for someone the day before their 20th birthday to have a glass of wine with their parents at a restaurant – madness)
- 10 pm close time for off licenses
- 4 am close time for on licenses
- no entry policy after 2 am
- ultimate aim should be to arrive at a point where no alcohol advertising is permitted in any media other than that which simply gives straight product information (certain sports codes will hate this one – also bans Tui billboards)
- A $250 “notice of debt” on anyone who is held overnight for intoxication (I like that one)
- drop drive drive limit from 0.08 to 0.05
- consideration of alcohol ignition locking devices on cars for all convicted drink-drivers (that one also worthwhile IMO)
- new offence of supplying alcohol to a minor under 18 (worth considering IMO)
There are some worthwhile recommendations, but the ones around a huge tax increase, the drinking age and a nationwide closing time are far too nanny state for me.
The report comes over as very wowserish in places, such as:
A familiar refrain we heard in our consultations and the submissions is that moderate drinkers should not be punished for the abuses of a minority.
The statistics in New Zealand tend to give lie to the bald assertion that the “vast majority of New Zealanders drink responsibly”. Instead they suggest that the majority of drinkers get drunk occasionally …
Oh my God. Call the Police. The majority of drinkers have occasionally got drunk. So effing what. Do they bash people up? Do they commit crime?