Stallholder bylaw issue stalls

Queenstown Lakes District councillor Niki Gladding. PHOTO: ODT FILES
Queenstown Lakes District councillor Niki Gladding. PHOTO: ODT FILES
Local councillor Niki Gladding’s calling for a full review relating to Queenstown Bay’s waterfront traders.

Last month, she called on council to scrap its Activities in Public Places Bylaw 2023, due to "absurd" conditions imposed on stallholders — including moving every hour and remaining at least 50m from each other — which they’d not been consulted on.

"The draft bylaw that went out for consultation did not say pop-up stallholders would need to move every hour — those conditions were only proposed for busking [originally]," she said.

Gladding says council "seem to be standing their ground on, ‘it’s fine, the consultation was appropriate and what was decided on was in-scope’.

"I still disagree.

"I think everyone would benefit from reviewing that bylaw and having a look at a number of things like, how do we issue permits to stallholders and how many permits do we issue and do we have different areas for different types of stalls?"

Gladding says while she doesn’t think there’s been any movement from staff in terms of doing another review, "there does seem to have been a shift in their approach to enforcement".

"What I’ve heard from staff is they seem to be easing up on the enforcement front, at least for now.

"If we are easing up on our approach to enforcement of the ‘move every hour’ rule, then I hope that message has been conveyed to stallholders so they can operate without fear of their property being seized."

Food vendor Danna Burton, one of about 40 licensed traders, says food stallholders are still trading, however arts and craft vendors still haven’t returned since council originally gave them till January 3 to adhere to the new bylaw conditions.

Burton originally pointed out the draft bylaw only imposed those new conditions on buskers, with council adding pop-up stalls and charity street collectors when it adopted the bylaw. "My opinion is simply this — they were wrong and they need to right it."

Council’s position, however, is the previous bylaw defined ‘busking’ to include pop-up stalls and charity street collectors.

Burton says she’s still considering a High Court judicial review.