Liquor ban changes on hold till 2011

South Waikato News - - FRONT PAGE - By MATHEW GROCOTT

Liquor bans could be ex­tended in the South Waikato but not in time to help po­lice this sum­mer.

South Waikato District Coun­cil is con­sid­er­ing ex­tend­ing its liquor bans to cover all ur­ban re­serves and al­ley­ways in Pu­taruru and Toko­roa. At present the ban cov­ers the towns’ cen­tral busi­ness dis­tricts.

The hours the liquor ban is in place will also be ex­tended.

At a coun­cil meet­ing on Thurs­day Toko­roa po­lice Se­nior Sergeant Graeme Hill en­dorsed the pro­posed liquor bans.

Mr Hill told coun­cil­lors the new liquor bans would give po­lice ‘‘an­other tool’’ to use.

The ban would not mean ev­ery per­son with al­co­hol in a re­serve would be ar­rested and charged he said, rather po­lice would use their dis­cre­tion.

Liquor bans gave po­lice the abil­ity to dis­perse groups drink­ing in re­serves, as well as the power of ar­rest, Mr Hill said.

He said a liquor ban would help pre­vent reg­u­lar dis­tur­bances at Strath­more Park fol­low­ing Fri­day evening sport.

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