Serious consequences for licensed establishments who open contrary to Emergency Orders
The Registrar of the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO) has issued an Order to immediately suspend the liquor licence of Tengo KTV, located at 8360 Kennedy Rd, Unionville, for reasons of public interest and safety.
The Registrar also issued a Notice of Proposal (NOP) to revoke the establishment’s liquor licence for multiple infractions of the Liquor Licence Act (LLA) , and Regulation 719, including not maintaining control over the premises.
On October 30, 2020 AGCO Compliance Officials (CO) attended the premises to conduct an inspection in relation to complaints received that the licence holder was operating contrary to the ROA. Several individuals were observed entering the premises via an alternate rear door. When the COs knocked on the locked front door, individuals inside began to run through the premises.
The front door was not unlocked to grant access to the COs, as required by the LLA. The COs gained access through the rear door as people were exiting. The individuals found inside the premises denied being “in charge” and left the premises.
AGCO Compliance Officials continue to work with police services and municipalities across Ontario to ensure that licensed establishments are acting responsibly. This has included participating as members of various Task Forces that are composed of local Bylaw officers, Public Health Inspectors, Police Services, and other Provincial Offences Officers.
As part of the government’s broader efforts to keep the province safe and open, Ontario’s Solicitor General has designated AGCO’s Compliance Officials as Provincial Offences Officers who can enforce the Reopening Ontario (A Flexible Response to COVID-19) Act (ROA).
Those who hold a licence to sell alcohol are responsible for meeting their obligations under the LLA, and to abide by the orders issued under the ROA. There are serious consequences for licence holders who do not meet these requirements, including the possibility of an Order of Monetary Penalty, a temporary suspension of the licence, or in the most serious cases a revocation of the licence.
An establishment served with a NOP has the right to appeal the Registrar’s proposal to the Licence Appeal Tribunal, which is an adjudicative tribunal independent of the AGCO and part of Safety, Licensing Appeals and Standards Tribunals Ontario.
“We appreciate how difficult these times are for all in the hospitality sector. As regulator, we’ve been working closely with the Government of Ontario on measures to support the sector throughout the pandemic. All who hold a liquor licence in Ontario are required to ensure alcohol is served safely and responsibly, and act with honest and integrity including during this COVID-19 outbreak. The AGCO will continue taking all appropriate regulatory actions for those that are unable or unwilling to comply.”
Tom Mungham, Registrar and CEO, AGCO
The ROA was passed into law on July 21 to ensure important measures remained in place to address the sustained threat of COVID-19 once the provincial Declaration of Emergency came to an end. See a government release.
Responsible Service Tip Sheet: Karaoke (note: hours of service now impacted, as per the ROA)
ABOUT THE AGCO
The AGCO is responsible for regulating the alcohol, gaming, horse racing and private cannabis retail sectors in Ontario in accordance with the principles of honesty and integrity, and in the public interest.
The AGCO is a regulatory agency with a governing board that reports to the Ministry of the Attorney General. The agency was established on February 23, 1998 under the Alcohol, Cannabis and Gaming Regulation and Public Protection Act, 1996.
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