City goes ahead with pot dispensary ban

Dispensaries: Council will push feds to clarify marijuana status

City council has ruled that medical marijuana dispensaries are not legally permitted in Campbell River but said it would “push” the federal government to make a decision on marijuana legislation.

Council, at its Tuesday night meeting, adopted a bylaw amendment prohibiting all marijuana operations – including dispensaries – unless they are legally permitted through Health Canada.

The bylaw has been at the council table since April, shortly after two dispensaries – WeeMedical and Trees Dispensary – took up operations in Campbell River.

Trees has since shut down following movement by council to make dispensaries illegal in the city.

Mayor Andy Adams said council, in making its decision, did take into account the emotional testimony from those with medical issues who, at last month’s public hearing, shared how cannabis has changed their lives.

“Our response to them is that we will continue to push the federal government to provide some urgency in what they have said they are going to do so that the local governments can have some clarity in moving forward with regulations and legislations,” Adams said.

The federal government has announced it will be handing down legislation concerning legalization next spring and the government has been given a deadline of August, 2016 to come up with legislation to address medical marijuana access challenges.

In the meantime, medical marijuana dispensaries have opened up in communities across Canada in anticipation of changing legislation despite the retail sale of cannabis currently being illegal in Canada.

Kevin Brooks, the city’s development services supervisor, said because that extends to all oils and edibles derived from cannabis, it is illegal for dispensaries to be distributing such products unless they have approval from Health Canada.

Brooks said that means the city can’t legally accommodate medical marijuana dispensaries until the law changes.

Council, at its May 9 meeting, had discussed issuing medical marijuana dispensaries a temporary use permit – a tool the city uses to allow uses that are not permitted under the zoning of the property being utilized.

At Monday’s meeting, however, Brooks recommended council not go down that road.

“Permitting any use that is federally criminal is not legally valid and beyond the authority of a municipal government,” Brooks said.

He clarified, though, that once the use of marijuana is legalized, or if an operator has a permit from Health Canada, council could consider a temporary use permit in those circumstances.

Council, in the end, with Coun. Larry Samson opposed, agreed with city staff and voted to deny issuing the temporary licence permits, at least until such time that the federal government implements legislation addressing medical marijuana access which is expected to come down in August.

“It’s just three months,” Coun. Charlie Cornfield said.

“I think it’s better we just chug along as we’ve been doing and we take it as the senior government decides on the legislation. It’s a short time period.”

 

 

Just Posted

B.C. to move salmon farms out of coastal migration route

Broughton Archipelago plan set to start in spring of 2019

Stranded B.C. trucker writes final wishes before being rescued 3 days later

‘I was just praying someone would come along’

Campbell River School District calls for report on buses and seat-belts

Parents have questions following expose on research around buses and safety

New wind warning for most of Vancouver Island

Forecasters are calling for strong winds up to 90km/h for some areas

Trudeau to make it harder for future PM to reverse Senate reforms

Of the 105 current senators, 54 are now independents who have banded together in Independent Senators’ Group

Boeser has 2 points as Canucks ground Flyers 5-1

WATCH: Vancouver has little trouble with slumping Philly side

Man dies after falling from B.C. bridge

Intoxicated man climbed railing, lost his balance and fell into the water below

B.C. animation team the ‘heart’ of new ‘Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse’

The animators, largely based in Vancouver, ultimately came up with a creative technique that is drawing praise

Light at the end of the tunnel for UN climate talks

Meeting in Katowice was meant to finalize how countries report their emissions of greenhouses gases

Janet Jackson, Def Leppard, Nicks join Rock Hall of Fame

Radiohead, the Cure, Roxy Music and the Zombies will also be ushered in at the 34th induction ceremony

Supreme Court affirms privacy rights for Canadians who share a computer

Section 8 of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms protects Canadians against unreasonable search and seizure

‘I practically begged’: Kootenay woman with breast cancer denied referral to Calgary

Breast cancer patient left to fight disease alone after being denied referral to Calgary

21 detained before Paris protests as police deploy in force

There was a strong police presence outside the central Saint Lazare train station, where police in riot gear checked bags

Most Read