Thirty five people were fined for breaching liquor laws and dozens of others warned on New Year’s Eve alone, but police and Wellington City Council say the new rules are working well.
New liquor laws that came into effect on December 18 include a 4am closing time for bars, 11pm cutoff for supermarkets selling alcohol, and fines of between $250 and $2000 for breaches of the liquor ban.
The council has drafted a local alcohol policy which extends opening hours to 5am, but the policy has still to go through an approval process – and police are planning to appeal against it.
Inspector Terry van Dillen said the police view was that a 3am closing time for bars and a 9pm cutoff for off-licence liquor sales would be ideal.
“We believe 3am is a good figure – if people want to party, they can party from 9pm to 3am, they’ve just got to change their views from partying from midnight till 7am.”
I wish the Police would stick to their jobs and not try to become like the Mutaween. It is not their job to decide people must stop dancing in town by 3 am.
I’ve often been in town after 3 am. You may be at a function until around 11 pm, and then want to head out with a few friends to carry on talking and drinking. We’re not being rowdy, not drunk, not causing problems – just enjoying some drinks and conversation. On other occasions we may mix that in with some dancing, which you know is legal and okay to do after 3 am.