Buller District Council

Alcohol Licensing

Changes to public notification of alcohol licences

When an applicant applies for a new alcohol licence or to renew an existing licence they must publicly notify the application pursuant to s101 Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act 2012.

As from 1 January 2017, public notices, with the exception of all new ON, OFF and Club licences will no longer be required to be advertised in the local newspapers, but instead they will be published on Council’s website for 15 working days.  New ON, OFF and Club licence applications will still need to be notified in the local newspapers and will also appear on the website. The Act also requires the applicant to place a public notice in a conspicuous place on or adjacent to the site to which the application relates. Many other New Zealand Councils have already changed to electronic notices via the internet and dispensed with the need for newspaper advertising.  The Grey District Council and the Westland District Council have also chosen to adopt the electronic notice practice.

Please phone Council on 03 788 9111 if you have any queries. If you would like to be notified when new or renewal applications are made,  please provide your email by clicking here

Sale of Alcohol

The sale of alcohol to any member of the public requires a Licence under the Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act 2012. The object of this Act is to ensure that the sale, supply and consumption of alcohol is undertaken safely and responsibly and the harm caused by the excessive or inappropriate consumption of alcohol is minimised.

All alcohol licence applications and renewals should be lodged at the Buller District Council for processing. All applications will be decided by the Buller District Licensing Committee.

  • Manager’s Certificate: authorises the holder to manage any licensed premises including Club licensed premises.
  • On-Licence: authorises the holder of the licence to sell and supply liquor on the premises for consumption on the premises (or conveyance).
  • Off-Licence: authorises the holder of the licence to sell liquor to any person for consumption off the premise or deliver liquor off the premises.
  • Special Licence: is a licence to sell and supply liquor for a particular occasion or event or series of such functions (within a twelve month time frame and at the same venue).
  • Temporary Authority: A District Licensing Agency may temporarily authorise someone to sell and supply liquor for up to 3 months. Situations where this may happen include a quick sale, illness, death, bankruptcy, liquidation, receivership, mortgagee in possession, landlord in possession, abandonment, etc.  A temporary authority holder has the responsibilities of the licensee to which the authority relates.

Licensed Premises Change in Management

When you appoint a new manager (including an Acting or Temporary manager for more than 48 hours) licensees must notify within two working days the District Licensing Agency (Buller District Council) and the Police. The District Licensing Committee has five working days in which to object to an appointment in which case they will notify the licensee and give a copy of that notice to the Police.  The licensee must then terminate the appointment of the manager no later than five days after receiving this notification.

If a manager resigns or their role is terminated you must also notify all of the above agencies.

The preferred notification method is to use the form ‘Notice of Management Change’ (see Liquor Related Applications below) and either email, fax or post.

Licence Controller Qualification (LCQ)

All Managers must hold a prescribed qualification known as a Licence Controller Qualification (LCQ) issued on or after 18/12/13.  Further information on this requirement is in the New Manager’s Certificate or the Renewal of Manager’s Certificate application pack.

Click here for application packs.

Liquor Bans

The Buller District Council’s Banning of Liquor in Public Places Bylaw 2005 came into effect in November 2005. It was designed as a town safety initiative to assist in reducing alcohol related crime, particularly vandalism and destruction of property.

An alcohol ban prohibits the possession or consumption of liquor, either for specific days, hours or at certain locations. A liquor ban is just one tool available to assist police and the community in dealing with alcohol related crime and disorder.

The Buller District Council has bans affecting areas within the district; two in Reefton and two in Westport. These are total alcohol bans, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Signs are present in these areas.

Making a submission on a Liquor Licence – A simple guide

Who may object?

Any person who has a greater interest in the application than the public generally, may object to the granting of a licence and the objection must state the grounds for being considered a valid objector.

What is ‘a greater interest’?

A person with a greater interest is someone who is likely to be more affected than most other people – for instance:

  • A resident living near the proposed premises (with consideration to levels of noise, vandalism or nuisance)
  • A trustee of a nearby school
  • A minister of a nearby church
  • A person or group who is likely to be directly affected by the proposed premises eg. youth group who work on the streets
  • A nearby business (with consideration to levels of noise, vandalism or nuisance)

For further information, contact:

Health Promoter
Community & Public Health
PO Box 43
03 768 1160 ext 718

Alcohol Regulatory and Licensing Authority – Annual Report


Live Cam