Governance Manual

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10.6.4 Decisions to make regulatory policies


  1. Types of regulatory policies. The council may make the following regulatory policies:

    • Local alcohol policy - this contributes to the regulation of alcohol outlet locations, hours and conditions, pursuant to the Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act 2012. A District Licensing Committee must take a local alcohol policy into account when making decisions on licensing applications. The maximum hours set in the local alcohol policy apply automatically. The policy is enforced by the council’s licensing inspectors and the police.

    • Local approved products policy - this regulates the locations from which approved psychoactive products (often referred to as legal highs) may be sold, pursuant to the Psychoactive Substances Act 2013. Restricted locations may be identified by way of broad area or proximity from facilities such as schools. The council has no role in enforcement; the issuing and enforcement of licences is handled by the Psychoactive Substances Regulatory Authority.

    • Dog control policy - this identifies Auckland locations where dogs are permitted under control off a leash, on a leash, or are prohibited, pursuant to the Dog Control Act 1996. Restrictions may differ according to times of the day or seasons (e.g. they might be relaxed during the winter months when there are fewer non-dog owners using public spaces). The policy itself is non-regulatory but a bylaw must be made under the Dog Control Act to give effect to the policy. It is enforced by the council’s animal management team.

    • Class 4 gambling venue policy - this regulates class 4 gambling machine (pokie machine) venues, by determining whether new machines will be permitted in Auckland, the location of these venues, and the number of machines permitted per venue, pursuant to the Gambling Act 2003. Any operator wishing to establish a new venue must obtain the council’s consent under the policy.

    • Board venue policy - this regulates TAB racing venues and determines if and where new venues will be permitted, pursuant to the Racing Act 2003. The TAB must obtain the council’s consent if it wishes to open a new venue or relocate an existing venue.

  2. Process for making regulatory policies. The process for making regulatory policies is set out in the respective empowering statutes:

    • The Local Approved Products Policy [1], Dog Control Policy [2], Class 4 Venue Policy [3], and Board Venue Policy [4] must be made in accordance with the special consultative procedure under the Local Government Act 2002. The legislation under which these policies are made also includes special notice requirements. 

    • The local alcohol policy has its own process set out in the Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act 2012 [5]. This involves the special consultative procedure under the Local Government Act 2002 to produce a provisional policy.  But it also involves mandatory consultation with the police, licensing inspectors and medical officers.  There is a right of appeal to the Alcohol Regulatory and Licensing Authority against the council’s provisional policy [6].

    • In every case, the general principles of decision-making apply when the council is making regulatory policies (see Section 10.5: Meeting Procedure). 



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