Relevant Legislation

11 months ago

The Council is empowered by the Prostitution Reform Act 2003 and the Local Government Act 2002 to make bylaws for the purposes of regulating the location of brothels and to regulate signage advertising commercial sexual services.

In making any bylaw, the Council must also follow the general procedure for making bylaws under the Local Government Act 2002 (subject to the Prostitution Reform Act 2003):

· Officers have concluded that the amended Prostitution Bylaw 2009 better enables the Council to make reasonable provision for commercial sexual services and the establishment of brothels in the district as well as their regulation instead of having no bylaw, relying only on education/information or general legal requirements. As a consequence, officers recommend that the amended Prostitution Bylaw 2009 is the most appropriate option as it provides for greater certainty and is enforceable by the Police.

· Officers recommend that the amended Prostitution Bylaw 2009 is the most appropriate form of bylaw.

· The Prostitution Bylaw 2009 is considered to be consistent with the New Zealand Bill of Rights Act 1990. The Bylaw does not place any unjustified limitations on freedom of movement, expression or association. Serious offences against the Bylaw require a judicial process through a summary conviction, which provides alleged offenders with opportunities for defence.

· In terms of the four general requirements for making a valid bylaw, the Prostitution Reform Act 2003 and the Local Government Act 2002 empowers the Council to make bylaws regulating brothels. The amended Prostitution Bylaw 2009 is not repugnant to the general laws of New Zealand. It will impose reasonable restrictions that afford better outcomes concerning the reasonable provision for commercial sexual services and the establishment of brothels in the district as well as their regulation.

· In light of decision-making under sections 77, 78, 79, 80, 81 and 82 of the Local Government Act 2002, as noted above, although other options, such as having no bylaw, relying only on education/information or general legal requirements are possible, the benefits of a bylaw as an option outweigh the costs in terms of the present and future interests of the district. A bylaw also better promotes or achieves community outcomes (such as health and safety) as expressed in the Rotorua 2030 Goals in a more integrated and efficient manner than having no bylaw. In terms of the impact of these options on the Council’s capacity to meet present and future needs in relation to any statutory responsibility, Council has the capacity and resources to monitor and enforce the proposed bylaw.

· The views and preferences of certain stakeholders who are affected by, or have an interest in, the Bylaw have been considered.