Photo by Henry Burrows.

Councils seek views on Easter Sunday trading

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The Tasman District and Nelson City councils are seeking community feedback on whether to allow Easter Sunday trading in the region.

The Government has given local councils the power to decide whether to allow shops to open on Easter Sunday from 2017.

If councils decided to allow Easter trading, employees have the right under the new law to refuse to work on Easter Sunday without giving a reason and without any repercussions from their employer.

Tasman Mayor Richard Kempthorne says both councils have decided to ask the community before taking a position.

“Rather than us saying ‘yes, we think shops should be allowed to open’, or ‘no, it’s not a good idea’ and then asking the community whether they agree with us or not, we are keeping a completely open mind on the issue until after we hear what people think.”

Richard says it makes sense to seek a regional view.

“It is possible to allow Easter trading in some locations and not others, but people may view it as odd if, for example, shops were open in Richmond but not in Nelson city on Easter Sunday – or vice versa. We want to make a decision that is sensible and workable for the entire region, and serves the needs of locals and visitors alike.”

The councils will be carrying out a survey to gauge the public’s views.

People can fill out the survey at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/EasterTradingNelsonTasman