Province to auction off Melfort liquor permit online

MELFORT — Those wanting to start a liquor retail store in Melfort have the chance to bid for a permit – online.

For the first time, the provincial government is auctioning off a number of liquor permits online through McDougall Auctioneers.

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“We have received a fair amount of interest since first announcing the population-based policy to allocate additional liquor permits earlier this year,” said Gene Makowsky, the minister responsible for the Saskatchewan Liquor and Gaming Authority.

“The online auction process is a way to allocate the permits efficiently and transparently so that new permittees can complete the application process and open for business in a timely manner.”

An auction will only occur if someone expresses an interest in a community where there is an available retail store permit.  The winning bidder must also meet all terms associated with holding a liquor permit.

The current auction will open on Nov. 27 and will close Dec. 6. Interested bidders are required to register at www.mcdougallbay.com, which is the website where all bidding will take place. Each auction will have an opening bid of $1,000.

The province said it plans to hold liquor permit auctions quarterly if there is interest expressed in a community where there is at least one available permit.

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