In his recent editorial about changes to B.C.’s liquor laws, editor John Harding was right about one thing: follow the money.
If you look into the history of the privatization of liquor sales, you will find hotel and pub owners right up front. Some of them have made a lot of money from their private liquor stores. I would venture to say that they would not be happy to see that arrangement disappear. They are probably quietly whispering in the minister’s ear: “no more liquor outlets.”
The best deal for the taxpayer has always been government-owned-and-operated stores. All of the profit from sales goes into general revenue and not into a private liquor store owners’ pocket. Given the chance, government stores would have cold beer and wine, extended hours and Sunday openings. The private store owners have managed to keep all of these things out of most government stores for 25 years.
This is why I don’t think you are going to see big changes in the sale of liquor in B.C.