Sobeys, Altantic Superstore to Face No Charges for Sunday Openings

HALIFAX, N.S. -- In the latest chapter of the saga that has pitted larger retailers against Nova Scotia legislators over the province's Sunday shopping laws, authorities here determined late last week that Canadian grocers Sobeys and Atlantic Superstore have broken no laws by reconfiguring their stores into smaller businesses so they can open on Sundays, and so won't be charged, according to published reports.

"Based on the manner in which Superstore and Sobeys are incorporated, and the nature of the retail business and the floor space involved in this complaint, the police are satisfied that the current openings are within the law," Constable Tanya Chambers of the Halifax Regional Police told the Halifax Daily News.

Lawmakers introduced changes in June to the province's Sunday shopping regulations in a bid to close loopholes that allowed the larger retailers to open on that day by reconfiguring their space, but without success. However, a court case brought by the province on the issue is continuing, with a ruling expected later this month.

According to Sobeys, the police's findings showed that the company had acted within the law. The results of the investigation "confirm...we were correct," Sobeys spokesman Gerald Weseen told the newspaper.
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