Nunatsiaq Online
NEWS: Nunavut June 05, 2012 - 6:04 am

Nunavut liquor task force report ready for tabling: Peterson

Liquor Act amendments to be introduced within current legislative assembly

SAMANTHA DAWSON

With the Liquor Act review’s task force having visited all Nunavut communities, their report will likely be tabled this week in the legislative assembly, Keith Peterson, the minister responsible for Nunavut’s liquor legislation, said June 4 in the territorial legislature.

The response from the communities about what Nunavut’s liquor act should allow was varied, he said.

“Some people wanted all alcohol to be banned, some people wanted more liquor stores,” Peterson said.

And many suggested there should be the option of buying retail liquor legally in Iqaluit and in Rankin Inlet.

People in the communities also wanted to run bootleggers out of town, Peterson said. 

There was “quite a range of discussion,” Peterson said.

The task force included MLAs, members of local alcohol committees and officials from the Government of Nunavut, Nunavut Tunngavik Inc., the RCMP and the Qulliit Nunavut Status of Women Council.

Quttiktuq MLA Ron Elliott, who inquired about the status of the legislation, said he has serious concerns about the timeline of getting the report tabled and then getting the legislation through to first, second and third readings, given there is only 17 months left to accomplish that goal.

Peterson said a proposed new Liquor Act will be introduced within the life of the current legislative assembly.

“It’s very difficult to say what the timelines are,” Peterson said.

The creation of a territory-wide task force was announced in March 2010 to look at the Nunavut Liquor Act, which was last amended in 2006.

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