Proposed changes to the Port Lincoln Dry Zone


At the Council meeting held on 4 December 2017, Council resolved to seek an amendment to the Conditional Dry Zone Exemption process through the Office of Consumer Business Services, in relation to the Port Lincoln Central Business District and foreshore area.

The current process allows for a total of three exemptions per annum to the otherwise continuous dry zone prohibition. Council seeks to remove the limitation on the number of exemptions permitted and add qualifying criteria of “showcasing local and/or regional produce and culture or promoting tourism”. The events are to be of historic, cultural, traditional or of major community significance.  The requirement for every exemption to be authorised by the City of Port Lincoln will remain.

Reasons for the proposed changes to the Port Lincoln Dry Zone 

The Conditional Dry Area is generally viewed as a very positive measure by the community, and in conjunction with the other crime prevention initiatives, has seen a reduction in alcohol related crime particularly along the foreshore. With the ongoing redevelopment of the foreshore and increased security via the surveillance cameras, the Conditional Dry Area will remain an asset to the city for the local community and visitors alike.

A Conditional Dry Zone enables a Dry Area to remain in place for the majority of the time but currently provides flexibility to hold up to three special, well-managed events on the foreshore contributing to the economic development of the city and surrounds. Such events must submit an application to the Council’s Dry Zone Exemption Assessment Panel to obtain support. The Committee assesses the event management plan and risk assessment practices, and then makes recommendation to Council for endorsement or otherwise of the event.

The ability of Port Lincoln to be able to waive the Dry Area for occasional events during the year, such as the annual Tunarama Festival and Farmers’ Markets, has enabled Port Lincoln and surrounding areas to showcase local produce and wines.

An exemption is given annually to the Tunarama Festival to enable the consumption of alcohol on the foreshore.  Leaving two exemptions remaining for the rest of the year and other events. This is proving to be limiting to the development of more foreshore events, particularly those targeted at attracting tourists to the town and keeping them here for longer.

Our dynamic local wine and beer industry is becoming an increasingly important element in Port Lincoln’s tourism repertoire. There are also increasing numbers of larger events occurring in Port Lincoln with the Tunarama Festival, SALT Festival, EP Auto Sprint and potential Farmer’s Markets. The ability of these events to showcase local produce and serve locally produced alcohol on our iconic foreshore would add favourably to many event ‘experiences’.  

Cruise ship visitors would also benefit from being able to sample local produce, including alcohol, as part of smaller events staged on the foreshore. The increasing number of larger cruise ships with more passengers and crew expected in the coming years will impact the ability of local eateries to provide this epicurean experience to all visitors within their current premises.  By not limiting the number of possible events to be held on the foreshore, Port Lincoln will be able to maximise the economic development opportunities of the region through tourism while ensuring our foreshore continues to be a well managed and maintained community asset.

Public Consultation closed

Interested members of the community were invited to make a written submission to Council between Tuesday 16 January 2018 to 5pm Monday 12 February 2018.  A Dry Zone Exemption Submission Form was available on Council's website and at the Council’s Civic Centre Administration Office.