Waipa District Council looks likely to say no to Easter Sunday trading.
Tuesday’s Strategic Planning and Policy Committee voted in favouring of sticking with the status quo. That means, unless Waipa businesses have an exemption under existing government legislation, they will not be allowed to trade on Easter Sunday. The Committee decision will not be finalised until it is formally ratified at the Council meeting later this month.
Council received 546 submissions on the issue with 70 per cent of submitters wanting shops to stay closed. No submitter chose to speak to their submission.
Mayor Jim Mylchreest and Deputy Mayor Grahame Webber voted against most Waipa shops having to remain closed. Councillor Andrew Brown abstained from voting.
Last month, Hamilton City Council rejected Easter Sunday trading, having received 225 submissions on the issue with 71 per cent against allowing shops to open.
Retailers however, can choose to open in a number of other nearby areas, including in the Waikato, Thames-Coromandel, Hauraki, Matamata-Piako, Otorohanga and Waitomo districts.
A law change has meant most Councils throughout New Zealand have now set their own Easter Sunday trading policy; there is no nationally consistent rule across the entire country.