Liquor store approval sparks fears
HUNTINGDALE residents have slammed a council decision to approve a liquor store that they believe will increase anti-social behaviour.
Pipit Close residents were outraged after the City of Gosnells council voted to approve the planning application for a liquor store at the shopping centre across the road.
The shops back on to a park and residents are worried intoxicated people will loiter in the area after visiting the bottle shop.
Local resident Murray Sharpe said he was “pretty disgusted” by the council’s decision to approve the bottle shop.
“I can’t believe the City of Gosnells would approve it because it’s not sitting isolated, the area’s surrounded by young people,” he said.
“We’ve seen it over at Lakers Tavern, where the liquor stores are, there’s an accumulation of people loitering.
“The council let themselves off the hook by saying if the planning is OK, let it go ahead. What they’re saying is that’s not our problem, it's a police problem.”
Mr Sharpe’s neighbour, Lee Clowting, echoed his sentiments.
“We’ve witnessed violent attacks in the park recently, young drunks causing trouble in the park and that’s without the bottle shop being there,” he said.
“It would have been nice if the council had been on the community’s side.”
Having previously fought off two previous liquor store applications in 1996 and 2011, fellow resident Gail Garrity said she was disappointed in the decision.
“(A while ago) the manager of IGA asked me what I thought if he put alcohol in his shop and I said ‘if you do that, there’ll be one big kickup’,” she said.
“All we can do is put our letters in and do an application for an objection.”
Last month, councillors Ron Mitchell and David Goode spoke in support of the liquor store as the shopping centre needed more activity and could provide additional job opportunities.
Cr Peter Abetz also supported the application and said while he sympathised with the residents’ concerns, council could only vote on the planning side of the issue.
The store must pass a public interest test, which may take into account whether annoyance or inconvenience could be caused to people who reside or work near the proposed licensed premises, before the Department of Racing, Gaming and Liquor approves it.
Resident Murray Sharpe is unhappy as locals believe a new liquor store will cause distruption in the neighbourhood.