Consultation opens today on Tauranga City Council’s draft Prostitution Bylaw 2019.
The bylaw ensures residents and visitors feel safe and enjoy our city by preventing harm and minimising the potential for offense from prostitution-related activity.
Prostitution was decriminalised in New Zealand in 2003.
"Council is unable to prohibit the activity in Tauranga, but can adopt a bylaw to determine where brothels can operate and how they can advertise their services in our city," says a council communications spokesperson.
"We’ve proposed some changes to the rules, to make sure our bylaw continues to tackle all the issues it needs to.
Proposed changes include:
• adding a definition of a ‘small owner-operated brothel’ (a brothel with no more than four sex workers)
• adding a definition of an ‘operator’ (a person who owns, operates, controls or manages the business)
• removing the requirement for a premises consent
• amending signage and advertising restrictions so they are in line with our Street Use and Public Places Bylaw 2018
• requiring all brothels, including brothels with four or less workers, to be a minimum 100 metres from schools and places of worship.
"Other minor changes, for clarity and consistency, are also proposed."
Full details of all the changes and why we’re proposing to make them are available on council’s website: www.tauranga.govt.nz/prostitutionbylaw
The community can provide feedback on the draft bylaw by completing the online submission form. Paper copies are also available at our customer service centre at 91 Willow Street and in our libraries.
This formal consultation process is the opportunity for the community to have their say before the changes become law. The consultation period ends on Friday, 1 March 2019.
Submission hearings will take place on Tuesday, 26 March. The community’s feedback will then be used to propose a final revised bylaw for adoption by Council later this year.
Bylaws help make sure people can live, work and play in Tauranga safely and free from nuisance.
They protect Tauranga’s environment and people’s enjoyment of public places, and allow us to minimise the potential for offensive behaviour.
Not complying with a bylaw can result in fines, prosecutions and seizure of property.