The Alcohol Reform Bill

December 12th, 2012 at 11:00 am by David Farrar

The Reform Bill passed its third reading yesterday. There’s actually a lot of significant changes in it, even though the wowsers are wailing that it doesn’t bring in minimum pricing, so a bottle of wine would cost at least $16.

The SOP by Lianne Dalziel was supported by most of Labour, all the Greens and NZ First. So expect the price of a drink to skyrocket under a change of government. There is a glimmer of hope though – Shearer, Mallard, Hipkins, Woods, Cosgrove and Faafoi voted against Dalziel’s minimum pricing amendment.

So what are the major law changes:

  • local alcohol policies can be set determining maximum trading hours in their area and limiting the location of licensed premises. This sensibly recognises that the needs of Wainuiomata may be different to Courtenay Place.
  • stronger rules about the types of stores eligible to sell alcohol and restricting supermarkets and grocery stores to displaying alcohol in a single area.
  • express consent from parents or guardians before supplying alcohol to a minor
  • new liquor licensing criteria, making licences harder to get and easier to lose
  • stronger controls on alcohol advertising and promotion

I think the most important change is that it is now an offence to supply alcohol to minors, without parental consent. Previously it was only an offence to sell it.

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14 Responses to “The Alcohol Reform Bill”

  1. MikeG (359 comments) says:

    In the interests of transparency it should be noted that one of Farrar ‘s clients is a liquor company.

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  2. slightlyright (93 comments) says:

    Some of the test cases that arise from this may be fascinating, particular in relation to the lengthy provision around supply to minors, seems if they get into your booze at a BBQ you are probably safe, also note the $2000 fine for fake id’s and the associated convictions a lot of 7th Formers will need to be careful!

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  3. Manolo (12,622 comments) says:

    If the despicable socialists gain power in 2014 and hike the price of alcohol, I can almost guarantee a future National Party government will never reverse the increase citing “social concerns” and voter’s backlash.

    The Labour Party nanny-state polices are against liberty and freedom of choice.

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  4. dime (8,751 comments) says:

    im just sure this goes far enough? i need to be protected by the government. i hope they havent left me with too much freedom of choice. i will come unstuck.

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  5. Longknives (4,044 comments) says:

    How ironic that the Greens are so anti-alcohol yet so ‘pro’ other drugs…
    Alcohol= The root of all evil
    Cannabis= Wonderous ‘Sacred Herb’ that we should all smoke every day

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  6. Manolo (12,622 comments) says:

    @Longknives, the Luddites actually hate businesses, companies, corporations.
    That’s why they oppose the alcohol industry. Not because of what they produce, but out of hatred against capitalism.

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  7. Weihana (4,475 comments) says:

    Longknives (1,923) Says:
    December 12th, 2012 at 11:27 am

    How ironic that the Greens are so anti-alcohol yet so ‘pro’ other drugs…
    Alcohol= The root of all evil
    Cannabis= Wonderous ‘Sacred Herb’ that we should all smoke every day

    I don’t agree with increasing the price of alcohol, however their overall attitude is a lot more sensible and consistent than the National party. Both are drugs and both cause harm. The Greens have not proposed making alcohol illegal but have proposed tighter regulations. So in other words they appear to be advocating that both drugs should be legal but regulated by government.

    Conservatives however seem to think alcohol and tobacco are special drugs and any attempt to control them is nanny state whilst avoiding any sensible and rational debate over other drugs and the failed war against them.

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  8. beautox (406 comments) says:

    I would guess that Winston Peters would vote against. That is if he was sober enough to vote the right way.

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  9. Harriet (4,010 comments) says:

    Weihana#

    “….Both are drugs and both cause harm….”

    Cassandra Wilkinson a former ALP advisor and now a journo at The Australian made one of the most valid points at the federal ‘pokies enquiry’ about problem gamblers, and the same applys to any other problem that a person has, which is -

    “To help people who are affected, they first have to admit that they have a problem.” All doctors know this.

    Nothing much will come of any of these law changes Weihana. It’s all just politics and the need to be seen ‘doing something’ – mostly for the votes. And that is also why all the law changes are ‘weak’ – so they don’t loose votes either!

    Tax payer funded publicity – for all of them.

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  10. RRM (8,988 comments) says:

    Somewhere on my phone I have a photo I took a few months ago in the booze area of a supermarket in Wellington; right next to the cheap bottom shelf chardonnay there was a display box selling Durex 3-packs.

    I thought that was the most brilliant product placement I had ever seen :-)

    (Sorry this has nothing to do with the current mooted alcohol reform bill…)

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  11. Martin Gibson (206 comments) says:

    Sensible comment Weihana, keep it up.

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  12. bc (1,251 comments) says:

    Yep nice answer, Weihana. Right on the money.

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  13. SPC (4,639 comments) says:

    World Health Organisation stats on alcohol consumption per capita.

    We are not in the top 50 – being at 9.62, just above the USA 9.44

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_alcohol_consumption

    Those who state the problem of supermarket and grocery store sale of beer and wine at lower prices as the major problem – could note that beer sales have not increased over the past 10 years – and are declining per capita.

    http://www.stats.govt.nz/browse_for_stats/industry_sectors/alcohol_and_tobacco_availability/Alcohol-available-for-consumption_HOTPYeDec11/Commentary.aspx

    It is spirits based drinks that are increasing in sales and they are not sold at these locations.

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  14. SPC (4,639 comments) says:

    The rtd situation.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=10828850

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