This morning I attended the meeting of the Kapiti Coast District Licensing Committee (KCDLC) that considered the application from Tran Vu Limited (Waikanae Beach Four Square situated at 28 Tutere Street) for the renewal of an Off Licence to sell and supply alcohol for consumption off the premises.

The meeting, held within the Kapiti Coast District Council chamber was well attended – with the public seating area within the Council chamber filled with supportive residents. There was effectively no ratepayer present who opposed the application.

I commend the chair of the KCDLC (Diane Amundsen) for her early communication of the decision that (numbers pending) she would accept three minutes of spoken input from the public present – regardless of whether they had provided a written submission prior to today’s meeting. Several ratepayers (myself included) who had not provided earlier written comment elected to speak. A general practitioner, local business owner and appreciative Waikanae Beach residents spoke supportively –- indicating the valued place that Waikanae Four Square held in their social fabric.

David Roil spoke to his highly relevant submission.

In my view the decision that the KCDLC makes around this application will prove a precedent and such attractive substantial interest going forward.

Despite the prescriptive language of the ‘Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act 2012’ (an Act that of necessity addresses a range of contingencies within its aim to benefit the community as a whole through a new system of control at point of sale and supply of alcohol and so contribute to the safe and responsible consumption of alcohol and the minimisation of harm caused by excessive consumption) – the Act articulates clear expectation that in implementation the new system will be ‘reasonable’.

To me this expectation gives considerable ‘discretion’ to the KCDLC as a decision making body.

It was crucially identified today that the current state of the technical capacity used by the applicant Tran Vu Limited (and in fact potentially all other Four Square outlets) to codify products at point of sale as a basis for the analysis and reporting required by the Act needs significant technical upgrade to assure that reporting does justice to their activity.

Within this context the application of the ‘definition’ of a grocery store could well be regarded as a blunt instrument.

Sections 105 and 106 of the Act discuss and describes ‘the amenity value’ that this premise offers its locality.

It is my opinion that viewed in a wider context, the amenity value that the Waikanae Beach Four Square offers (in the first instance the Waikanae Beach community and the wider ambit of Waikanae and those who visit) will increase significantly due to:

  • The positive impact that the expressway will bring in terms in terms of Waikanae becoming the place of choice for people to live and or visit
  • The role it will play for Waikanae Beach residents negatively impacted upon by the loss of connectivity within Waikanae that the expressway will bring
  • The clear preference for small businesses compatible with a village atmosphere over large corporate interest as expressed by Waikanae Beach residents within the KCDC facilitated consultation
  • The older demographic and issues of access and mobility
  • Promotion by Mayor Gurunathan of Kapiti as a ‘retirement mecca’

I support entirely the application from Tran Vu Limited (Waikanae Beach Four Square situated at 28 Tutere Street) for the renewal of an Off Licence to sell and supply alcohol for consumption off the premises.

Margaret Stevenson-Wright, Ratepayer, Waikanae

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