Trustees approve expanding Surf Pub occupancy license to match historical use

Derek Kilbourn

Sounder News

Tuesday, October 17 2017

The Islands Trust does not object to the Surf Pub liquor license being extended to match what has been the “norm” at the pub for years.

The official application to the Liquor Control Licensing Board (LCLB) is to increase the occupancy from 50 patrons to 75 in order to reflect the existing floor area of the exterior front patio (5 tables/25 seats).

The application was before the Gabriola Local Trust Committee this past Thursday, October 12. As pointed out, the deck license has never been mentioned or dealt with by the LCLB, until recently when a temporary inspector caught the error.

For over 50 years, the pub deck has been used, but never legally licensed.

None of the Trustees objected to the application, saying only that they hoped there would be opportunity for the neighbours to have comment to the LCLB as the Liquor Board makes the final decision. No comment was sought by the Trust from neighbours - there is no statutory requirement to do so.

Trustee Heather O’Sullivan said, “I think it’s totally appropriate that the LCLB will be taking comment, much more so than us.” As part of the application to the LCLB, signage will be placed at the Surf with the necessary contact information for public comment.

Laura Busheikin, Chair of the Gabriola LTC and Denman Island resident, said this is the third application of its kind she has seen this year.

“I find that interesting - a liquor license establishment that has been doing something for quite some time, then finding out it wasn’t in the liquor license.”

She said what has been found, is there has been a case of neighbours not being happy with an establishment, but not doing anything. After the application went public, she said, “They came forward and said they had issues.” The Gabriola LTC recommended the LCLB approve the Surf application.