Rotorua MP Todd McClay has not given up the fight to get a law change so Rotorua shops can open on Easter Sunday.
He is considering bringing a local bill to Parliament but first wants to see Parliament's reaction to a similar local bill, which Waitaki MP Jacqui Dean is expected to present in the next couple of months to enable shops in Wanaka to open on Easter Sunday.
Last December Mr McClay's member's bill went down 62-59 on a conscience vote.
It was the 11th time Parliament had been asked to change New Zealand's Easter trading regulations in the past 20 years.
Mr McClay said since his defeat last year he had been speaking to business owners and the Rotorua District Council and he said more work needed to be done to shore up more votes from politicians in support of Easter Trading. "At this stage it would only be worth bringing another law before Parliament if the numbers were there."
Mr McClay said he wanted a law change which would give Rotorua retailers the choice to open or not and give shop workers the option of working.
Chamber of Commerce president Roger Gordon said he supported any move to get Rotorua stores open on Easter Sunday.
"If at first you don't succeed try, try again. I don't think we can give up."
He said it was farcical that Rotorua could not open but Taupo could, and retailers were frustrated they could not open on Easter Sunday.
At least two of Rotorua's garden centres, Oderings and Palmers, opened illegally on Good Friday. Under the current Easter Trading laws, garden centres are only allowed to open on Easter Sunday.
However, owner of Rotorua's Palmers, Darryl Pierce, said he opened on Good Friday because it was what his customers wanted.
Mr Pierce said the only year they received complaints about Easter trading was when the centre didn't open on Good Friday. He said he wasn't concerned about being prosecuted, saying he did not think that would happen as no inspector from the Department of Labour had visited.
Darryn Odering, owner of the 10 Oderings stores in New Zealand, said all his stores were open on Good Friday. Department of Labour spokesman Colin Patterson confirmed Rotorua was not visited by inspectors on Easter Sunday and was unlikely to have been visited on Good Friday.
No Rotorua retailers would face action unless there were subsequent complaints about them opening when they should not have, he said.
The Department would consider the prosecution of 38 retailers throughout New Zealand after 19 were caught trading on Good Friday and another 19 on Easter Sunday.