News release

New Regulations Limit Sunday Shopping

The province has approved amendments to its Sunday shopping regulations.

Government, today, June 28, approved changes that will take effect immediately and will limit the number of retail grocery outlets that open on Sundays. The new regulations mean that large grocery retail chains cannot operate on Sundays, regardless of how they configure their operations.

"In 2004 the majority of Nova Scotians voted against Sunday shopping," said Michael Baker, Minister responsible for the Retail Business Uniform Closing Day Act. "These amendments are intended to ensure that the result of that vote is respected."

The amendments clarify an exemption in the regulations that allows grocery stores under 4,000 square feet to open on Sundays. Under the amended regulations, the entire building must be under 4,000 square feet, even if grocery stores operate as multiple businesses under a single roof. The amendments do not affect grocery retailers who regularly opened on Sundays before June 1, 2006.

Nova Scotians will have another opportunity to vote on Sunday shopping during a plebiscite to coincide with municipal elections scheduled for 2008.

The amended regulations can be viewed on the website at www.gov.ns.ca/just/regulations/regs/rbsunday.pdf .

FOR BROADCAST USE:

The province approved changes today (June 28th) that prevent large grocery retail chains from opening on Sundays.

The amendments -- which take effect immediately -- clarify an exemption in the regulations that allows grocery stores under four thousand square feet to open on Sundays.

Under the new regulations, the entire building must be under four thousand square feet, even if grocery stores operate as multiple businesses under a single roof.

The amendments do not affect grocery retailers who regularly opened on Sundays before June 1st.

-30-

Media Contact:

Cathy Shaw
Department of Finance 902-424-8787 E-mail: