Special licence considered for R&V Live Nation
The Gisborne District Licencing Committee is considering whether to approve a special licence application from R&V Live Nation to sell alcohol up until 5am on 1 January 2019.
Today the committee met and heard evidence in support and opposition to the application and will release their decision within two to three weeks.
Council’s licencing inspector Rosita Mala recommends discretionary conditions if the committee chooses to grant the application, including a comprehensive security plan and one-way-door policy from 1am.
A further recommendation is made for the number of drinks patrons can buy reducing progressively from 9.30pm on December 31.
The recommended conditions could provide confidence that R&V Live Nation will operate a festival and camping ground bar areas in a manner that meets the objectives of the Liquor Act, she said.
R&V Live Nation chief executive Kieran Spillane told the committee the event had a proven track record as responsible hosts, they made ongoing improvements to their operation to reduce intoxication and believed the extended hours would not have any impact on the wider Gisborne community.
The hours of operation applied for are the same as the last festival, however they are outside of those in the new Local Alcohol Policy adopted by Council in March this year.
The committee is still entitled to issue the licence after taking into regard the measures put in place by the applicant.
Police oppose the application to 5am but would not oppose if the applicant modified the operating hours to those set in the policy to 2am on 1 January.
Police alcohol harm reduction officer Sergeant Isaac Ngatai said they would also object if a comprehensive security plan that outlined numbers of security staff and their shifts was not submitted by 14 December.
Hauora Tairāwhiti medical officer of health Margot McLean opposed the application due to concerns about the potential for alcohol-related harm.
She told the committee the application to 5am provided 18.5 hours of access to alcohol and suggested it was the heaviest drinkers who consumed alcohol between 2am and 5am.
Ms McLean also referenced a newspaper article which claimed underage people had gained access into R&V, however confirmed this had not been raised in subsequent planning meetings between Police, R&V and the Hauora.
This will be the 16th year of R&V, with 20,000 patrons expected including 13,000 camping onsite.