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Baker Lake, Nunavut, to vote on ending liquor restriction in community

The question on the ballot will be: “Are you in favour of ending the current system of liquor restriction in Baker Lake and having an unrestricted system where only the general liquor laws of Nunavut apply?”

60 per cent majority needed to change the rules

On Jan. 22, eligible voters can cast their vote at the Jessie Oonark Centre from 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Advanced voting will be held in the same place, same hours, on Jan. 15. (Jordan Konek/CBC)

The hamlet of Baker Lake, Nunavut, is holding a plebiscite on the current method of bringing liquor into the community.

On Jan. 22, eligible voters can cast their vote at the Jessie Oonark Centre from 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Advanced voting will be held in the same place, same hours, on Jan. 15.

The question on the ballot will be: "Are you in favour of ending the current system of liquor restriction in Baker Lake and having an unrestricted system where only the general liquor laws of Nunavut apply?"

If 60 per cent of voters say yes then the current system will end.

Right now, to buy alcohol in the community an individual must apply for a permit and permits are reviewed by the local alcohol education committee.

The committee decides who can consume, purchase or transport liquor and how much a person may possess. It can deny permits.

If residents vote yes on Jan. 22, the committee will be dissolved and the community will become an unrestricted jurisdiction, where residents will be able to order from the Iqaluit or Rankin Inlet liquor warehouses without a permit. 

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