Liquor store has support - applicant

Opponents of a proposed new liquor outlet on the corner of Tremaine Ave and Botanical Rd in Palmerston North are holding a public meeting on Wednesday to marshal efforts to block the development.

But applicant Baldeep Dhillon from Big Barrel will not be attending, because he believes he has the support of the neighbours and will be given consent.

Cr Billy Meehan said a strong turnout would help to ensure community opposition to the outlet was taken into account.

The intersection already has a pub with a bottle store on one side of the roundabout, and an off-licensed mini-market on another.

Cr Meehan said many of the social issues in the neighbourhood were related to alcohol, and the area did not need any more outlets to compound those problems.

The liquor licence application and objections have been sent to the Liquor Licensing Authority to consider.

The authority can either make a decision based on those papers, or could elect to hold a public hearing.

Cr Meehan said he believed there were precedents that allowed community good to be taken into account.

But Mr Dhillon said he was feeling confident the authority would decide in his favour without the need for a hearing.

He said he had talked to more than two dozen people most likely to be affected, and had the support of most of them.

"There were a lot of people who had things put in front of them, and signed petitions and letters, but after I explained to them, I got most people on my side."

He did not think the community meeting was necessary, and did not intend to show up.

Mr Dhillon said the only people who could make a valid objection were those who had an interest greater than that of the public in general.

The meeting will be in the Somerset Crescent School hall at 7pm.

The Manawatu Standard