Today the City took the next step in a process to consider revised trading hours and a Sunday prohibition for the sale of liquor from licensed premises for off-site consumption. 

The City of Cape Town’s Economic, Environmental and Spatial Planning Portfolio Committee today, 3 April 2013, approved an additional public participation process as part of its consideration of possible amendments to the Liquor Trading Days and Hours By-law.

“The Portfolio Committee has initiated another public comment period and is reconsidering certain aspects of the by-law as part of the City’s commitment to being both responsive to the various stakeholders in our city and responsible in balancing the needs of different communities. It is important to note that while certain aspects of the by-law are being reviewed, the rest of the by-law is now in place. Any revisions to parts of the by-law will seek to strike a balance between the possible economic impact of regulations by ensuring the reasonable sale of alcohol within the hospitality sector, while at the same time looking to address the social effects of alcohol abuse,” said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Economic, Environmental and Spatial Planning, Councillor Garreth Bloor.

The provision for another round of public participation follows a request from Council that the Portfolio Committee consider and initiate an amendment to the relevant sections of the Liquor Trading Days and Hours By-law relating specifically to the implementation of revised trading hours and a Sunday prohibition for the sale of liquor from licensed premises for consumption off-site (e.g. shops and bottle stores).

The City encourages all interested stakeholders who would like to make submissions in respect of amendments to the by-law to please do so. These amendments will only apply to the portions of the by-law under review. The City had previously conducted an in-depth public participation process and sent out notices of the new Liquor Trading Days and Hours By-law taking effect well in advance of its implementation. Despite an initial limited response, the City recently noted a greater degree of concern to which it must respond. The motion of exigency was the result of calls from various organisations and individuals to re-look the aforementioned aspect of the by-law.

The City has therefore introduced a further comment period, comprising two rounds of public participation, because it values the feedback of interested stakeholders. The first round, which will run for 30 days, is expected to commence in mid-April and will be advertised in the media. The second round is a 45-day period and will allow for input on draft amendments, as informed by the first round.

Background information
The by-law states that, for off-licensed premises, a licensee may sell liquor for consumption off the licensed premises from Monday to Saturday from 09:00 to 18:00. No liquor may be sold by any off-licensed premises at all on a Sunday. The only exception is wineries, which may trade from their tasting rooms on Sundays.

Last week Council recommended that off-consumption sale of liquor be permitted on application by licence-holders in certain location categories, excluding local business and residential areas. This would enable licensees in these categories to apply both for the extension of trading hours as well as the extension of trading days (to include Sundays).

Furthermore Council requested that, while the possible amendment to the by-law is being considered and during the public comment period, enforcement of the by-law relating to trading on Sundays by current licence holders (in the relevant location categories) be suspended. All other aspects of the by-law, including trading hours, are still enforceable.

As part of our commitment to being an Opportunity City, the City seeks to balance the needs of all residents and take heed of their needs and concerns. The by-laws of the City are living documents and the City must respond to changes in the social and economic environment.

MEDIA RELEASE 
NO. 1305 / 2013 
03 APRIL 2013

ISSUED BY:
INTEGRATED STRATEGIC COMMUNICATION AND BRANDING DEPARTMENT, CITY OF CAPE TOWN

MEDIA ENQUIRIES:
COUNCILLOR GARRETH BLOOR
MAYORAL COMMITTEE MEMBER FOR ECONOMIC, ENVIRONMENTAL AND SPATIAL PLANNING,
CITY OF CAPE TOWN,
TEL: 021 400 1375    CELL: 082 722 2685, E-MAIL: GARRETH.BLOOR@CAPETOWN.GOV.ZA