No one stepping forward to open pot shop

Richard Froese
South Peace News

Local citizens may have to drive to other Peace Country towns to buy their marijuana once it becomes legal.

It’s because no applications to sell cannabis in the High Prairie region have yet been filed with the provincial government.

The Alberta Gaming and Liquor Commission has released a list of 452 applications to April 20. Since the call opened March 6, the AGLC has received several applications from the Peace that includes one each from Valleyview, Slave Lake, Peace River and Grimshaw, and 10 from Grande Prairie.

AGLC will carry out licencing, oversight and compliance functions for private cannabis retail, as well as manage its distribution.

While the AGLC is not formally capping the number of retail outlets, it anticipates around 250 stores will be licenced in 2018, says a government news release.

Initially proposed to become legal on July 1, the date has been postponed to early August or September.

Fees totaling more than $4,000 are due at the time of application and include a $400 non-refundable application fee for each store location, a $700 annual licence fee and a $3,000 initial deposit for background checks.

All retail cannabis licence applicants must undergo mandatory background checks, which are conducted on an applicant, director, shareholders and key employees to prevent criminal interests from operating, associating or having a financial interest in cannabis retail sales in Alberta.

An applicant who is or was a participant in the unlawful cannabis trade, including illegal retail or medical sales, or has criminal convictions for serious violence offences, possession for the purpose of trafficking, trafficking, manufacturing or production of a controlled drug or substance under the Controlled Drug and Substance Act, will not be eligible for a retail cannabis licence.


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