Saturday , 27 November 2021

Alberta Gaming, Liquor and Cannabis says cheers to cutting red tape

Alberta Gaming, Liquor and Cannabis (AGLC) will reach the Alberta government’s red tape reduction target of one-third, almost two years ahead of schedule.

Cutting more than 7,500 pieces of red tape for this industry has removed unnecessary restrictions on liquor sales, promoted responsible and safe drinking in designated parks and helped many businesses survive the recent pandemic.

“These changes open up new ways for Albertans to consume alcohol safely and responsibly while giving our hard-working businesses more ways to serve their customers,” Grant Hunter, Associate Minister of Red Tape Reduction said. “A great outcome of our work with AGLC supported many restaurants that had to adapt quickly during the recent pandemic.”

Initiatives introduced to help businesses during the pandemic will remain in place and will continue to offer Albertans more options to enjoy alcoholic beverages in safe and socially responsible ways.

Key initiatives include:

  • Enabling restaurants and other liquor licensees to sell liquor with takeout and delivery orders, helping more small businesses survive during the pandemic.
  • Allowing Albertans to responsibly enjoy alcoholic beverages in designated parks.
  • Accommodating liquor distributors to host virtual tastings.
  • Supporting liquor manufacturers to offer complimentary sealed liquor samples for consumption at home.
  • Consolidating, updating and removing duplicate and overlapping policy requirements for raffle events.

“The Canadian Federation of Independent Business commends AGLC and the Alberta government for following through on their commitment to reduce red tape by one-third,” Annie Dormuth, Alberta provincial affairs director, CFIB said. “Unnecessary regulation consistently ranks as a top concern for our members; it is critical for economic recovery that governments continue their efforts to make red tape reduction a priority. CFIB awarded AGLC with its annual Golden Scissors award for allowing businesses to sell alcohol with delivery and takeout safely within days of Alberta imposing its first COVID restrictions – a life line for the province’s restaurants. As we look toward post-pandemic recovery, red tape reduction is a low-cost way for government to stimulate the economy while protecting necessary regulation.”

The goal of red tape reduction is to cut red tape by one-third by 2023.

“Our members appreciated how quickly AGLC stepped up to help licensees by giving our restaurants safe options for liquor take out and delivery at the outset of the pandemic when on-premise dining was suspended,” Mark von Schellwitz, vice president for Western Canada, Restaurants Canada said. “They then further revised the regulation to include pre-mixed cocktails at our members’ request. This certainly helped a number of restaurants survive the pandemic, as takeout and delivery became a much more important part of their sales mix.”

As of June 1, Alberta’s government has completed more than 400 red tape reduction initiatives removing more than 109,500 regulations for a 16.36 per cent overall reduction. These initiatives are making life easier for hard-working Albertans and Alberta businesses.

“Through our commitment to support government’s red tape reduction efforts,” Len Rhodes, board chair, AGLC said. “AGLC exceeded our 2020-21 fiscal year goal and by the end of this year, AGLC will have met our target of 33 per cent – two years ahead of schedule. These modernization efforts demonstrate our deep commitment to a modern regulatory environment that supports consumer choice, innovation and economic growth.”

About Arthur C. Green

Arthur C. Green is from Whitbourne Newfoundland and graduated from the CNA Journalism Program. Arthur also studied Business Marketing and Political Science at Memorial University in Essex England and St. John's Newfoundland. Green has worked for such organizations as CBC, CBC Radio, NTV, Saltwire, Great West Media, CKLB Radio, Vista Radio, and Postmedia. He also loves Jiggs Dinner!