Stung by a $100-million insider retail lottery ticket scandal, Premier Dalton McGuinty isn't about to hand over wine and beer sales to corner stores.
McGuinty made it abundantly clear yesterday he does not believe convenience stores measure up when it comes to the vigorous security standards required to sell provincially produced wine and microbrewery beer and keep it out of the hands of underage drinkers.
"Just look at the business with the OLG (Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp.)," McGuinty said
"It's much easier for us to maintain security through the (Liquor Control Board of Ontario) and the Beer Store than to give that power to thousands of convenience stores," he said in response to a question.
A private member's bill introduced yesterday aimed at relaxing rules governing those products was applauded by convenience store owners, who say they need the new market to survive and compete with big grocery stores.
Still, McGuinty said he couldn't support the bill -- introduced by a government backbencher -- given recent allegations that shop clerks have defrauded the lottery system by claiming an inordinate number of prizes. Source...