By Laura Keil
A decision by the Liquor and Cannabis Regulation Branch has resulted in a hefty $15,000 fine for the company that owns the Valemount Log and Rail Bar.

The LCRB began investigating the bar last September, looking into allegations that it was being operated by a third party, which requires an additional application.

A consultant working for the company, Silver Mount Enterprise Ltd, requested an extension to the Dec. 12th, 2022 deadline, but did not reply to follow-up questions. As a result the bar contravened its liquor license by selling liquor past Dec. 12th.

According to the decision, Silver Mount admitted to the breach but said the consultant had technical difficulties and was unable to submit a third-party application because he “lost control of the portal” and could not access the licensees’ electronic account with the LCRB.

In her decision, LCRB general manager’s delegate Dianne Flood said the consultant could have tried harder, and could have contacted the LCRB via phone or email, contact methods listed in both notices issued in September and November.

“To protect the public and the community well-being, the Act sets up a rigorous licensing scheme that requires licensees and third-party operators to be vetted to ensure they are ‘fit and proper,’” Flood said.

The seriousness of such a blatant disregard will typically require imposition of a penalty to address the Licensee’s non-compliance and also to encourage future compliance by both this Licensee and other licensees.”

Because Silver Mount had not committed a similar contravention within the previous two years, Flood issued the lowest fine allowed for the breach but denied a request to extend the deadline for payment past June 29th. Silver Mount already knew about the contravention and penalty for five months.

Flood also ordered that signs be posted in a prominent location at the bar showing that a monetary penalty had been imposed.