Teslin petition calls on Yukon government to reconsider plans for liquor store

The debate over whether to allow a liquor store in Teslin spilled into the legislative assembly last week.

The debate over whether to allow a liquor store in Teslin spilled into the legislative assembly last week.

Last Thursday NDP MLA Kate White tabled a petition from the community that was signed by nearly 200 residents asking the Yukon government to reconsider the idea.

The petition also called on the government to hold a public consultation over the issue, and to consider investing in other projects that could be more beneficial to the community.

About 450 people live in Teslin. As it stands, alcohol is only available at the Yukon Motel and Restaurant.

NDP MLA Kevin Barr said a government liquor store would make a wider selection of alcoholic beverages cheaper and more readily accessible in Teslin.

“Many community members are concerned about the social problems and impact on the social fabric of their community that this could have,” he said.

He then asked Stacey Hassard, the minister responsible for the Yukon Liquor Corporation as well as the MLA for Pelly-Nisutlin, whether a public consultation would be held in the community.

Hassard said two community meetings had been held so far and that he’d continue to go door-to-door to find out more about the community’s feelings towards the idea.

He also said he hadn’t seen the petition and that some residents had told him they’d signed without fully understanding the project’s implications in the community.

“I have never been in favour of or opposed to the project,” he replied to Barr.

“I’m simply doing what I believe an MLA should do, and that is, when you’re brought forward a question, to do the due diligence and do the consultation that is required.”

Barr said Teslin residents have mentioned other potential projects, such as the construction of a swimming pool, which would contribute positively to the community.

In January 2015, the Village of Teslin and the Teslin Tlingit Council published their joint community development plan, which outlines capital and infrastructure projects for the next decade.

A new swimming pool was at the top of the wish list. But high operations and maintenance costs have prevented that project from being realized.

The community expects the pool would cost about a half million dollars, and between $35,000 and $317,000 per year to maintain, according to past research.

Hassard said he’s been told the community doesn’t want a pool anymore.

“When the First Nation or the local municipal government is approached with the idea of a swimming pool they say, “No, absolutely not. We can’t afford it. We’re not interested. Please don’t approach your government about building us a swimming pool.”

Contact Myles Dolphin at


Just Posted

Yukon First Nations leader Mike Smith dies at 71

‘He was just a kind and gentle individual and he didn’t want anybody to want for anything’

Santa Claus to skip Whitehorse this year unless funding found

’We’re a not-for-profit. If we don’t have the money for an event we don’t put it on’

Yukon government emits new radon rules

‘There could potentially be some additional cost for some operators’

More money needed for Whistle Bend Phase 8 planning, Whitehorse staff say

‘There’s a mix of development planning and recreation planning going on’

The Yukon government has disgraced itself

The Department of Justice must come clean about the scope of abuse settlements

How low can we go?

Unemployment in the Yukon is low, but the reasons why may indicate problems

Five Aboriginal B.C. knowledge keepers to know

These museums and dedicated Indigenous leaders are crucial to cultural revitalization in B.C.

Mary Lake residents fret over infill

‘They paid top dollar’

Water study for Whitehorse infill lots technically sound, consultant says

‘This study is based on a lot of good information’

Yukon Workers’ Compensation Health and Safety Board to increase rates in 2018

All but one industry will see a rate increase in 2018

Yukon Liberals table supplementary budget

Projected surplus continues to shrink from $6.5M to $3.1M

Most Read