January 23, 2017 10:46 am
Updated: January 23, 2017 12:27 pm

New B.C. liquor laws come into effect today

WATCH: Starting Monday a new law goes into effect - allowing a range of B.C. businesses to apply for a liquor licence. But that's angered pub owners who say barber shops and bookstores will soon be cutting into their bottom line. Tanya Beja has the story.


New liquor laws come into effect today creating new opportunities for businesses across the province.

Starting today, all kinds of businesses, from salons to bookstores, can apply for a liquor licence.

Hotels with a bar will also be allowed to serve guests a complimentary drink upon arrival and even permit them to carry that drink from the lobby to their room.

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The only businesses that will be exempt from being able to apply are those who operate from a motor vehicle or those that target minors.

“One of government’s goals is to ensure that doing business in B.C. is easy and exciting,” said Coralee Oakes, Minister of Small Business and Red Tape Reduction and Minister Responsible for the Liquor Distribution Branch, in a release last year. “Creating new liquor licence and permit options for businesses is part of our ongoing effort to remove operating obstacles for businesses, create ease of access for consumers, and still maintain B.C.’s health and safety standards.”

Just like bars and restaurants, businesses will have to go through the same licensing processes as other establishments, including that all staff serving liquor are ‘Serving-It-Right’ certified. The requirement that businesses applying for a liquor primary licence must also abide by their local government’s or First Nations’ liquor licensing criteria will remain unchanged.

WATCH: The B.C. government opens the door for more businesses to serve alcohol. As Keith Baldrey reports, that means your drinking options are being expanded well beyond bars and restaurants.

© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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