Cessnock City Council, at its Ordinary Meeting on 18 August 2021, resolved that Council prepares a proposal for the re-establishment of Alcohol Free Zones (AFZs) in the Cessnock, Kurri Kurri and Weston CBDs, including changes requested by the Police, and undertakes the necessary advertising and consultation.
Thirty (30) days’ consultation will take place from 25 August to 24 September 2021. The current AFZs expire on 31 October 2021. The proposed AFZs will be operational from 1 November 2021 to 31 October 2025, which is a period of four (4) years. This is consistent within Section 644 (Street Drinking) of the Local Government Act 1993 and the Ministerial Guidelines for Alcohol Free Zones, published February 2009.
An AFZ can be established in a road-related area where drinking alcohol is prohibited and includes footpaths, nature strips and car parks.
Hunter Valley Police District have requested the following changes:
- That AFZs be established on new streets connecting with the existing AFZs
- That the AFZ on Vernon Street, Cessnock, not be re-established
Maps of the three AFZs to be re-established, including proposed changes and Frequently Asked Questions, can be viewed here.
The AFZs aim to improve public safety as part of a “whole of community” approach to eliminating recognised and documented disorderly, anti-social behaviour caused by the consumption of alcohol in public streets.
The AFZs were established with the full support of the Local Community and Business Houses, Cessnock City Liquor Accord and NSW Police Force. The zones are one element of, and complement a range of harm minimisation measures implemented in the target streets.
Initial consultation with Hunter Valley Police District has provided strong support for the re-establishment and expansion of the AFZs as an ongoing means of reducing anti-social behaviour.
Pursuant to the Resolution above, Council seeks your comments and submissions by 25 September 2021. All comments and submissions should be titled “Alcohol Free Zones” and be made in writing to:
- Website: Have Your Say page here
- Email: email@example.com
- Post: Cessnock City Council, PO Box 152, Cessnock NSW 2325
Please be advised that full copies of submissions may be made available to the public including your name and address, unless Council receives a request for personal details to be suppressed. Consultation results will be reported to a future Ordinary Meeting of Council.
Should Council adopt the proposal to re-establish the AFZs this will be announced by advertisement in the Cessnock Advertiser.
Comments and submissions must be received by Saturday 25 September 2021.