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Save-On-Foods not allowed to sell wine in Kamloops

Councillors voted against allowing wine to be sold at Save-On-Foods in Sahali.
Councillors voted against allowing wine to be sold at Save-On-Foods in Sahali.

KAMLOOPS - In front of crowded chambers Kamloops council voted to deny the Save-On-Foods application which would have allowed sales of wine in their Sahali store.

During a regular council meeting today, May 17, only councillors Dieter Dudy and Ken Christian supported the motion, while Mayor Peter Milobar and Coun. Arjun Singh abstained due to conflicts of interest.

During the marathon meeting council heard from supporters and opposition to the bylaw variance request, which would have allowed the grocery chain to sell wine at the Sahali branch. The company purchased a provincial wine licence when it bought out Discovery Wines last year.

The bylaw variance would have allowed for the grocery store to sell wine even though it's within one kilometer of established liquor stores. Council voted to create the bylaw in August of last year after the provicne changed legislation to allow sale of some alcohol in grocery stores.

Al Deacon, owner of the Sahali Liquor Store and Fox’n Hounds Pub, spoke against the motion and is pleased with how council voted.

“We’re elated,” he says. “It’s good news for not only our business, but the rest of the small businesses who retail alcohol in Kamloops.”

Steve Moriarty, development director for Overwaitea Food Group, the owners of Save-On-Foods grocery stores, says he’s extremely disappointed with the decision.

“I’m not sure they left any wiggle room for us to examine other opportunities,” he says.

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