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Queen’s Park shoots down corner store booze proposal

Not in Ontario (Image: Owen Byrne)

Well, that was fast. Despite corralling 113,000 signatures, a request from the Ontario Convenience Stores Association to bring beer and wine to corner stores was shot down by Ontario Liberals yesterday. In an email to the Toronto Sun, Aly Vitunski, a spokesperson for Ontario Finance Minister Dwight Duncan, adopted an “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” kind of attitude, saying: “The current system balances access for both customers and suppliers with social responsibility. We take the concerns of convenience store owners seriously, but we believe the current system of selling liquor is an effective way to guard the public interest.” The Sun also quotes NDP MPP Rosario Marchese making similar noises, although Tim Hudak, at least, “didn’t reject the idea outright.” Perhaps the $1.5 billion annual dividend the LCBO pays to provincial coffers has something to do with all this? [Toronto Sun]