Volume 93, Issue 27

Tuesday, October 19, 1999


NEWS

Law school sued for discrimination

Senate prefers to refer decision

CFS and OUSA debate over status

Star deal challenged by papers across country

Newfoundland abolishes New Year's Eve last call

Singing Blues after thefts

Briefs

Bass Ackwards

Caught on Campus

Newfoundland abolishes New Year's Eve last call



By Nina Chiarelli
Gazette Staff

Party-goers may be in for a treat if Ontario and Quebec follow Newfoundland's lead and extend last call on New Year's Eve.

The Newfoundland Liquor Corporation has amended a provincial law which requires lounges, bars, taverns and clubs to stop selling liquor at its designated 3 a.m. closing time.

Gene Healy, media relations officer for the corporation, said the province was approached by bar licensees to extend the hours they could sell liquor to patrons. "Under normal circumstances they're allowed to be open from 9 a.m. until 2 a.m. on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays. From Thursdays to Sundays the bars open at 9 a.m. and close at 3 a.m.."

He said as the result of a request by bar owners, the province is extending the sale and consumption of alcohol in bars until 9 a.m. on Saturday morning. "It's only a window of six hours. We're just connecting the dots."

Because of this ruling, revelers in Canada's eastern-most province will be able to party for 24 hours – from 9 a.m. Dec. 31, until 9 a.m. the next day.

In Québec, where Public Security Minister Serge Menard is planning to table a similar bill in the provincial legislature, the matter of riots and crowd control problems is more of a risk, said Dennis Dolbec press secretary for the Ministry for Public Security.

"It's for public safety, not for a big party," he said, explaining Québec's situation was much different than that of Newfoundland. "Theoretically, if everybody leaves the bar at the same time it will be very difficult for police to deal with the amount of people," he said.

Albert Campion, media officer with the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario, said his sector is looking at the issue at the present time, but a decision has yet to be made.

Under the current law, Ontario bars are allowed to serve and sell alcohol until 3 a.m. on New Year's Eve, an hour later than usual. "A discussion in the premier's office could bring forth a regulation," Campion said.

The issue was raised last Thursday during a media scrum in London, said Pierre Leduc, press secretary to Premier Mike Harris. According to Leduc, Harris was caught off guard when asked about extending last call. Leduc said he believed Harris will look at the issue, but as of yet, he had not made any conclusions.




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