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Ponoka eyes curbing hours for pawn, liquor shops

Ponoka RCMP will provide information on Jan. 15 supporting the town’s bylaw to limit liquor store and pawn shop hours.

Staff Sgt. Cameron Chisholm will host the informal discussion from 6 to 7 p.m. in the Kinsmen Community Centre.

Chisholm has declined to discuss reasons behind requesting the bylaw, saying it’s needed due to “statistics and anecdotal evidence.”

In November, council passed first reading of the bylaw to restrict liquor store sales and hotel liquor off-sales to 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Liquor delivery would end at 10:30 p.m. and pawnshops would be restricted to 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. hours.

The bylaw is modelled on one in Wetaskiwin that has been in effect since Jan. 1, 2010.

In a memo to council, chief administrative officer Brad Watson and protective services director Ted Dillon say Ponoka has experienced “possible spinoff” from Wetaskiwin’s bylaw in that “patrons are now visiting the neighbouring communities whose business hours match their needs” and “RCMP have expressed a concern that this may be happening in this area.”

 
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