On December 1, Restaurants Canada contacted B.C.’s Liquor Control and Licensing Branch (LCLB) to express our agreement with its plan to review the province’s naming and signage policy in regard to businesses, restaurants and bars.
Many of Restaurants Canada’s members have expressed disappointment with this policy, because numerous aspects are deemed unnecessary and will add to costly liquor licensing red tape and regulatory burden. The naming policy is also a time-consuming process for the LCLB, as the agency must constantly monitor and enforce compliance, which becomes more difficult when social media marketing is the norm.
A November 2017 consultation paper distributed by the LCLB listed four proposals to help streamline and simplify the naming and signage policy. Of the four options presented for consideration, Restaurants Canada and the British Columbia Foodservices Association supported the following recommendation:
Remove all restrictions, except to prohibit socially irresponsible names and signs, as it would:
- Diminish the separation between food primary and liquor primary licence classes
- Allow for quicker turnaround of licence applications
- Simplify the application process – Residents and local governments may be concerned that “bars” are opening in their community
Restaurants Canada will continue to monitor the situation closely. We hope the LCLB will implement the recommended regulations in the near future.