Plebiscite coming for Baker Lake's liquor system

A plebiscite is set to be held in Baker Lake, Nunavut at the end of the month to let residents decide if they want to change the community’s liquor system from unrestricted to a committee system.

Two public meetings to be held on April 13 at noon and at 7 p.m.

Baker Lake, Nunavut, will hold a plebiscite at the end of April to decide if it will change its current liquor system. (Jordan Konek/CBC)

At the end of the month, residents of Baker Lake will have an opportunity to vote on whether the community's liquor system should change from being unrestricted to a committee system.

If at least 60 per cent of voters choose "yes," the territorial government will change Baker Lake's status under the Liquor Act to a committee system, according to a news release issued Wednesday.

That means before people can import alcohol into the community, they would need approval from an elected alcohol education committee. The committee can also promote alcohol awareness.

The plebiscite vote comes in response to a petition, the release says.

In 2018, the community opted to remove liquor restrictions in the community with 60.1 per cent of votes. Sixty per cent of votes had to be cast in favour of making the change

This time around, voting day is on April 26 with advanced voting on April 19. The territory will also hold two public meetings on April 13, one at noon and another at 7 p.m. in the community hall.

Representatives from the Department of Health, Department of Finance, and Elections Nunavut will be on hand to answer questions.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, up to 100 people can attend each session. Refreshments will be provided.