BC Liquor law changes impact Port Alberni

The city will have to flex its bylaw muscles if it hopes to have any say or influence over the impact of new provincial liquor laws.

The city will have to flex its bylaw muscles if it hopes to have any say or influence over the impact of new provincial liquor laws, city planner Scott Smith said.

Smith gave councillors an overview of the new laws at their June 23 meeting.

Shoppers can now buy beer and wine from farmers’ markets, Smith said.

Minister of Justice Suzanne Anton announced the changes on June 21. Other changes already announced previously, will also see beer and wine sales in grocery stores permitted sometime in 2015.

Once that comes into effect, liquor, beer and wine will only be permitted using a “store-within-a-store” model, Smith said. The province isn’t issuing any new liquor licences therefore existing license holders would have to apply.

A second initiative could see craft beer and wines sold on store shelves alongside other grocery items.

The changes will also allow liquor manufacturers to sell their products at farmers’ markets if the markets approve and if it is meets local city bylaws.

According to Smith, the Spirit Square Farmers’ Market at Harbour Quay is considered public use under city zoning. But the zoning doesn’t distinguish between alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages.

After the meeting, Smith used the example of Chase and Warren Wineries, saying that using the new laws the business could apply to the farmers’ market at Harbour Quay to sell wine.

Councillor Jack McLeman asked what kind of control or say the city had in the matter.

Smith replied that the city permits liquor stores under site-specific zoning bylaws, therefore any proposed relocation to a grocery store would trigger rezoning and a public process.

It’s not clear however if the zoning applies to the craft beer and wines slated to be sold off of store shelves, he said.

In his report to council, Smith said that the province also eliminated the five-kilometre restriction.

Under changes to come, liquor store owners will be able to move their licence anywhere in the province, as long as they are no closer than one kilometre to an existing liquor outlet. Previously, regulations limited them to moving within five kilometres of their current store.

The impact, Smith said, could see Port Alberni liquor outlets move to larger urban areas such as Vancouver or to tourist-rich areas such as Whistler.

“We’ll see some business people leave Port Alberni for more money,” Coun. Hira Chopra said.

According to a provincial government press release, 17 of the 73 recommendations from last year’s review have been implemented. The government plans to implement more than 50 by spring 2015.

A re-write of the Liquor Control and Licensing Act is also in the works.

EDITED: To reflect the plan to sell beer, wine and liquor in grocery stores won’t be put into effect until sometime in 2015. Also that 17 of the 73 recommendations from the liquor law review have bee implemented.

reporter@albernivalleynews.com

Twitter.com/AlberniNews

Just Posted

Two ambulances and a medevac helicopter are on scene at Taylor River Flats rest area on Highway 4 due to a serious motor vehicle incident. (PHOTO COURTESY MAGGIE BROWN)
Highway 4 reopens after accident at Taylor River Flats

Multi-vehicle crash had closed highway to west coast

The Rollin Art Centre is holding children’s art camps this summer. (SUBMITTED PHOTO)
ARTS AROUND: Celebrate art in the garden

Rollin Art Centre will host art event on Saturday, June 26

The King Edward Liquor Store sponsored the Alberni Golf Club’s event on June 13. From left to right are Ken Porteous (manager of the King Edward Liquor Store) and Alberni Golf Club Members Don MacGowan, John Robbins and Wayne Cheveldave. (SUBMITTED PHOTO)
ALBERNI GOLF: Doug Cheetham records hole in one

Next Sunday is an open day with the best gross and the best net up for grabs

Francine Cunningham is an award-winning Indigenous writer, artist and educator. (SUBMITTED PHOTO)
Electric Mermaid online event hosts panel of Indigenous writers

Event takes place through Char’s Landing in Port Alberni

San Group owners Suki, left, and Kamal Sanghera with technical manager Richard Zeller at their facility in Port Alberni in Feb. 2021. The forestry company is looking at expanding its business into northwest B.C. by setting up a manufacturing unit in Terrace. (SUSAN QUINN/ Black Press file photo)
Forestry company San Group eyes Terrace for northwest B.C expansion

The company looks at Skeena Industrial Park to set up a sawmill manufacturing unit

Maxwell Johnson is seen in Bella Bella, B.C., in an undated photo. The Indigenous man from British Columbia has filed complaints with the B.C. Human Rights Tribunal and the Canadian Human Rights Commission after he and his granddaughter were handcuffed when they tried to open a bank account. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Heiltsuk Nation, Damien Gillis, *MANDATORY CREDIT*
VIDEO: Chiefs join human rights case of Indigenous man handcuffed by police in B.C. bank

Maxwell Johnson said he wants change, not just words, from Vancouver police

Tk’emlups te Secwepemc Chief Rosanne Casimir stands outside the former Kamloops Indian Residential School after speaking to reporters, in Kamloops, B.C., on Friday, June 4, 2021.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Kamloops chief says more unmarked graves will be found across Canada

Chief Rosanne Casimir told a virtual news conference the nation expects to release a report at the end of June

A woman wears a vaccinated sticker after receiving a COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination clinic run by Vancouver Coastal Health, in Richmond, B.C., Saturday, April 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. ranks among highest in world in COVID-19 first-dose shots: health officials

More than 76% of eligible people have received their 1st shot

A screenshot of the First Peoples Cultural Councils First Peoples’ Map. (First Peoples Cultural Council)
Online resource blends B.C.-Alberta’s Indigenous languages, art and culture

Advisor says initiative supports the urgent need to preserve Indigenous languages

An artists conception of the new terminal building at the Pitt Meadows Regional Airport.
Air travel taking off in B.C., but lack of traffic controllers a sky-high concern

There will be demand for more air traffic controllers: Miller

Canadian Armed Forces experts are on their way to North Vancouver after a local homeowner expressed worry about a military artifact he recently purchased. (Twitter DNV Fire and Rescue)
Military called in to deal with antique ‘shell’ at North Vancouver home

‘The person somehow purchased a bombshell innocently believing it was an out-of-commission military artifact’

Amy Kobelt and Tony Cruz have set their wedding date for February, hoping that more COVID-19 restrictions will have lifted. (The Macleans)
B.C. couples ‘gambling’ on whether COVID rules will let them dance at their wedding

Amy Kobelt and Tony Cruz pushed back their wedding in hopes of being able to celebrate it without the constraints of COVID-19

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Most Read