no vendors

No vendors allowed at Spirit Square

Village of Burns Lake bylaw protects local business

  • Jun. 8, 2022 1:30 a.m.

A recent post on WTF Burns Lake Facebook by the organizers of Burns Lake Show and Shine saw approximately 62 comments not in favour of a bylaw by the Village of Burns Lake.

Burns Lake Show and Shine organizers posted, “Some disappointing news today. The Village of Burns Lake will not allow any of the vendors we had lined up for the Burns Lake Classic Car show being held on June 26 at the Spirit Square. The show is 100 per cent still a go! There will not be vendors such as food on site at the Spirit Square. Burns Lake has a number of restaurants and other food options within the community. Keep in mind there is a BBQ being held out at Homeside Antiques after the show and shine where food can be purchased by donation.”

Sheryl Worthing, Chief Administrative Officer for the Village of Burns Lake said, “Vendors are not permitted, by bylaw, to set up at Spirit Square except for a Canada Day community event or an Aboriginal Day community event. Vendors are not permitted on any public property. They are allowed to set up anywhere on private property as long as they have permission from the property owner and are in the correct zone. And they must purchase a temporary business license from the Village of Burns Lake.”

Councillor Charlie Rensby for the Village of Burns Lake addressed some of the outrage on Social Media by saying, “I apologize for the inconvenience, rest assured that the village will have this rectified for next year’s show for sure. My promise to all of you who read this is to fix this legislative oversight so more inclusive events can be held. We have that in place to protect all businesses from vendors coming in that don’t pay taxes etc. Two exception days are June 21 and July 1. But we will be looking to amend this old bylaw so it includes other events too the bylaw doesn’t specify, just prevents any business from setting up on village property outside of those two exception dates. Concessions and barbeques in the past were run by non-profits and volunteers, but because this year the vendors are business’ the bylaw applies.”

Worthing went on to say, “If there is a request from a community group to add a community event to the list, then council could consider this. This would require a bylaw amendment.”

The bylaw was put in place to help protect local business who pay taxes all year long and to prevent vendors who do not pay taxes to swoop in and take business away from local businesses.