Commencement of municipal liquor trading hours

Wednesday, 12 December, 2012
Danie Cronje
A number of municipalities have already prepared by-laws on liquor trading days and hours as provided for under the Western Cape Liquor Act which commenced on the 1st of April.
Some of these have included transitional provisions which state that existing hours will remain applicable for a period after commencement of the Act. Other by-laws do not have such transitional provisions.

According to Danie Cronje, the Director of Liquor Law Services at Cluver Markotter Incorporated the transitional provisions in most of the by-laws leave room for confusion.
Some by-laws state that the new hours will be applicable from date when the licence is renewed in terms of the Western Cape Liquor Act i.e. 1 January 2013.
However some bylaws also refer to the date when  the licence was converted to a licence under the Western Cape Act i.e. 1st of April 2012.
The Western Cape Liquor Authority had added to the confusion by issuing a notice containing its own interpretation of the Act.  It states that the new hours in terms of by-laws will only become applicable on the 1st of April 2013.
According to Cronje it appears that the Liquor Officers of the SAPS agree with this interpretation and licence holders will therefore be allowed to continue trading in terms of existing hours until 31 March 2013.