Having their current liquor licence cancelled didn’t come as much of a surprise for the Skaha Marina leaseholders.
Tom Dyas, one of the principals of Trio Marine Group, said they are working through government processes to secure their lease on the part of the marina sitting on Crown land.
“The property line between the land that is owned by the city and the land that is owned by province actually runs through the building,” said Mitch Moroziuk, the city’s director of operations, in December when Penticton city council voted to give Trio Marine a two-year lease on the city land and a sub licence of occupation on the Crown portion, allowing Trio to negotiate a joint lease agreement with the city and the province of B.C.
“Everything is working it’s way through those processes,” said Dyas. “We don’t anticipate there being any hiccup on us having everything in place for the summer months.”
The short-term lease is intended to carry the deal to the point where conditions are met for Trio’s 29-year lease to kick in. Trio holds a food primary licence for the marina restaurant but were told they require a lease on both sides of the premises in order to maintain their liquor license.
The discrepancy over the property line and the liquor licence was brought to light by Nelson Meikle of Penticton Citizens First, who has a B.C. Supreme Court civil suit against Trio and the City of Penticton. Meikle raised the issue in May 2016 with the Liquor Control and Licencing Branch and filed a complaint in early August.
LCLB manager of licensing administration Heather Stewart responded in a June 16 letter, saying they were now aware of the problem.
“It is my view at the time the license was issued we had no evidence or reason to withhold the license approval,” wrote Stewart.
Dyas said they were not aware there might be a problem when they filed their liquor licence application, but they are working on the difficulty.
“We have a few things that are getting straightened up, and continue to look forward to having another positive tourist attraction for people who come visit Penticton during the summer months,” said Dyas.