EDITORIAL: Dubbing the rub

Humourous text is hidden in bylaw for Inter-Community Business Licence

Sometimes, the best stuff is in the fine print.

Or if not the best, perhaps the most


Towns and cities all around the Central Island area have adopted, or are in the process of adopting, bylaws that would create what’s called an Inter-Community Business Licence.

The idea is solid and we have written about it in this space previously.

Basically, it works like this: a business buys its licence in its home community, then purchases another licence to be able to work legally in all of the participating communities.

When you’re a painter or plumber who will do work, perhaps in the same week, in Parksville, Qualicum Beach and Port Alberni, this makes good sense.

Or one can take one’s chances by not buying the Inter-Community Business Licence, but we would advise against that because every few months, communities instruct their bylaw enforcement officers to take a tally of the business licences — who has one, who does not, and what about that Ladysmith-based electrician here for three solid weeks of work?

We learned this week that not all businesses will be allowed to apply for this new licence.

Vehicles for hire (taxis, limousines or buses) need not apply. Perhaps there’s a potential debate on their exclusion, but we will pass on that today.

The only other business types that are not allowed to apply for this new licence? “Social escort services” and body-rub services.

We put “social escort services” in quotes because although we’re pretty sure what it means, there was no explanation in the bylaw.

There was, however, a detailed explanation of body-rub services, and we quote from Schedule A of the bylaw: “which includes the manipulating, touching or stimulating by any means, of a person or part thereof, but does not include medical, therapeutic or cosmetic massage treatment given by person duly-licensed or registered under any statute of the province of B.C. governing such activities or a therapeutic touch technique.”

Seriously, you just can’t make this stuff up.

— Editorial by John Harding

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