Con­cerns over liquor changes

North West Telegraph - - News - Robert Dougherty

Lo­cal liquor out­lets have voiced con­cerns about the im­pact re­stric­tions on open­ing times could have on busi­ness.

Di­rec­tor of Liquor Li­cens­ing Peter Minchin vis­ited Port Hed­land last week to dis­cuss likely new liquor laws with bot­tle shop own­ers, po­lice and Town of Port Hed­land coun­cil­lors.

Re­stric­tions could in­clude mov­ing trad­ing hours in the Pil­bara back to noon each day, removing for­ti­fied prod­ucts such as port from sale and lim­it­ing cus­tomers to buy­ing one car­ton of beer or one bot­tle of wine.

North West Liquor Sup­plies owner Brent Rudler said Kar­ratha and other Pil­bara ar­eas were about to feel the changes al­ready felt in Hed­land.

“There is is­sues such as re­duc­tion in trad­ing hours which will be more felt across the Pil­bara than with us be­cause we were al­ready re­duced in trad­ing.

“They are go­ing to go to 12pm (open­ing time) based on the new show-cause no­tice, so they are go­ing to lose four or five hours for six days a week, but we al­ready have that.

“They will lose a full shift, up to 10 full time jobs in Kar­ratha and Newman — ones we have al­ready lost.”

Mr Rudler said only a few stores in Hed­land were con­cerned about pulling for­ti­fied prod­ucts from the shelves and said changes to open­ing times could have more of an im­pact on tourism across the re­gion.

Walk­a­bout Ho­tel gen­eral man­ager Steele God­dard said there was con­cern from at­ten­dees about trad­ing hours and lim­it­ing the quan­tity that could be bought.

“The main con­cern for us is that they want to limit our trad­ing hours down to not open­ing be­fore mid­day . . . it cuts into our lunch ser­vice that we do, and trade from the air­port that we nor­mally get in the morn­ing,” he said.

“The gen­eral con­science is a loss of jobs and wages — other out­lets were con­cerned that they (cus­tomers) can only get one car­ton or one bot­tle of spir­its per car.”

A Depart­ment of Lo­cal Govern­ment, Sport and Cul­tural In­dus­tries spokes­woman said con­sul­ta­tions in­cluded a meeting with ad­min­is­tra­tion and elected mem­bers of the Town of Port Hed­land.

“Del­e­gate of the Di­rec­tor of Liquor Li­cens­ing Peter Minchin vis­ited venues within the Pil­bara to con­sult with key stake­hold­ers on pro­posed liquor re­stric­tions,” the spokes­woman said.

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