Liquor Licenses

The B.C. Government's Liquor & Cannabis Regulation Branch (LCRB)  is the body responsible for issuing liquor licences*, with the support of Municipalities. Each licence class has its own eligibility requirements and its own licence terms and conditions, outlined in the Liquor Control and Licensing Act and Regulations.

The City of Penticton does not issue liquor licences, but provides local government input regarding zoning, building and other city regulations as part of the LCRB review process. Some licence types may require a public consultation process and Council resolution before final LCRB approval.


In Penticton, the City is involved in following LCRB application types:

  • New Liquor Primary and Liquor Primary Club licences, (Requires Council Resolution
  • Food Primary Licences – Occupant loads (Staff issuable) Also, Typically first step in further approvals for Liquor Primary, Manufacturer Lounge/SEA or Permanent amendments.
  • Manufacturing and Retail Sales Business Licences (Staff issuable)
  • Lounges and Special Event Areas Endorsements for wineries, breweries or distilleries (Requires Council Resolution)
  • Permanent amendments to licences listed above (typically requires Council resolution)
  • Temporary amendments to licences listed above (staff issuable)

The City is also involved with some Special Occasions Licenses:

  • Special Event Permits  for public or private events with hours of service prior to 9:00am or past 10:00pm, in City-owned facilities, parks must be reviewed by City staff. Please direct your inquiries to the Recreation Department on 250-490-2437 or email.
    • Events taking place on a city beaches or streets with liquor service will require support by Council.
    • Please go to the City’s Outdoor Events site for more information.
    • You can also download this helpful guide on Special Events.


Next Steps:

We strongly recommend that if you are planning in starting a new business or modifying and existing business that you make an appointment with Development Services staff (250 490 2501) to ensure Zoning, Building Code and other regulations are reviewed prior to completing your LCRB applications.

*Please note: the LCRB issues regular updates, policy directives and information regularly surrounding rules, regulations and requirements around liquor. We highly recommend you visit their website for up-to-date info on regulations.

Frequently Asked Questions


How long does it take to process an application for a liquor licence for my premises?

Liquor licence review times are dependent on the Licence Type. Having a complete application with all required drawings and documents will assist staff in processing your request more efficiently.

  • New Liquor Primary, Lounge & SEA endorsements may take up to 90 days to process and run parallel to the LCRB review process.  An Occupant Load review will be required. It is advisable to review your proposal with staff as soon as possible to ensure zoning and other regulations will not become an issue later on.
  • Permanent Amendments to existing licences typically start with the City and may take up to 90 days as a joint parallel review process.
  • Temporary changes or Occupant Load confirmation request may take up to 7 working days to process.


What does a liquor licence cost?

Liquor Licence reviews vary depending on the Licence types. Please see the application form for further information. 

When do I need a Special Event ?

Special Event Permits are issued by the LCRB and are available to event hosts who wish to provide any kind of temporary or infrequent liquor service at events such as family gatherings, private functions, community festivals and manufacturer tastings.

A Special Event Permits the host to serve or sell liquor at an event in accordance with BC’s liquor laws and regulations. Event hosts are considered liquor licencees and are responsible for the safety of their guests.

If you plan to host a public event at a City-owned facility, or you wish to serve alcohol prior to 9 am or past 10 pm, your Special Event Permit will be reviewed by the City as part of the rental agreement process. You will be required to fill out the City SOL application form. Please direct these inquiries to 250-490-2437 or email


Do I need a Special Event Permit to host an event in a City-owned building or park?

Yes, if you are planning on serving liquor at your event, you will be required to identify it as part of your Rental Agreement Booking (link to Rec form). City facilities and parks have been classified regarding the acceptable types, occupant loads and hours of service. No further City reviews are required if you are meeting those parameters.

Applications requesting service hours or event sizes outside the predetermined limits will require an a City Review and signature. The application & regulations are available here. Please direct any inquiries to 250-490-2437 or email


What if I am hosting a private event (wedding, reunion, meeting, etc)?

The BC Liquor & Cannabis Regulation Brand requires you to have a Special Event Permit for any event involving the service of alcohol to a group of guests. 

The City of Penticton only reviews those applications that occur on City-owned property where the hosts plan on serving alcohol prior to 9 am or past 10 pm. If your event will operate beyond the allowed hours, an Hours Exemption is required and you will be required to fill out the City’s SOL application. You will still require a special occasions licence if you are serving and/or selling  alcohol at private family events or private special events. The definition of these types of events is explained on this LCRB webpage.