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2 Nunavut hamlets to hold alcohol plebiscite Nov. 9

Arviat and ​​​​​​​Coral Harbour will hold plebiscites on their current liquor systems which prohibit alcohol.

Arviat, ​​​​​​​Coral Harbour to vote to end prohibition

The hamlet of Arviat, Nunavut. The community will hold a liquor plebiscite Nov. 9. (Submitted by Dylan Clark)

The hamlets of Arviat and Coral Harbour will hold plebiscites Nov. 9 which, if passed, could see an end to prohibition in both communities.

The hamlets petitioned the territory's minister of Finance for a vote to change their liquor systems, according to a pair of releases issued by the territory Monday.

Under Nunavut's Liquor Act, at least 60 per cent of voters need to vote in favour for the change to go in effect.

Advanced voting in both hamlets will take place Nov. 2.

Arviat plebiscite 

In Arviat, residents will vote whether to allow the purchase or importation of 24 355 ml cans of beer and eight litres of wine every seven days.

The hamlet on the west coast of Hudson Bay with an estimated population of 2,966, held a similar plebiscite in Feb. 2014.

At the time, the community voted 509 to 226 against changing its liquor system, which has prohibited alcohol for four decades.

The Department of Finance will hold two public meetings about the proposed changes in the John Ollie Complex Oct. 29 at 12 p.m. and 6 p.m.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, only 100 people may attend each session.

Representatives from the department and Nunavut Elections will be in attendance.

Coral Harbour plebiscite

If residents of Coral Harbour — with an estimated population under 1,000 — vote in favour of changing its liquor system, people will be able to purchase or import one litre of spirits, four litres of wine and 18 litres of beer every 14 days.

The Department of Finance will hold two public meetings to discuss the changes on Oct. 27 at 12 p.m. and 6 p.m. in the Community Hall.

As in Arviat, representatives from the department and Nunavut Elections will be in attendance, and because of COVID-19 restrictions, only 100 people may attend each session.

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