No opposition to cannabis

Chris Clegg
South Peace News

If anyone was expecting a raucous to erupt at the town hall meeting on cannabis laws June 19, they were disappointed.

A very civil and frank discussion of the issues occurred with few concerns over the impending legalization of the substance.

The only concern repeatedly brought forward by the 25 attending the meeting was the areas of consumption.

“I’d like to see it treated the same as alcohol,” said trustee Joyce Dvornek, whe attended the meeting on behalf of High Prairie School Division.

Terri Rosser agreed.

“The only issue appears to be consumption. You need to have some way of regulating this.”

In opening the meeting, Mayor Brian Panasiuk appeared to expect a controversial meeting.

“We know this is a polarizing topic,” he said. “We want to make sure [council] is doing the right thing.”

But not one person spoke opposing its legalization.

A Power Point presentation highlighted some of the laws concerning cannabis. They are as follows:

* no one under 18 can enter a cannabis store;
* no one can smoke in vehicles;
* people can possess up to 30 grams in public, and can buy no more than 30 grams during one visit to the store;
* landlords can prohibit cannabis smoking in their rentals units, the same as smoking.

Matters town council can control include:

* places cannabis stores can operate;
* store hours.
* the number of cannabis outlets they can approve: Panasiuk said council has no plans to limit the number of stores.
* council, if it chooses, can set a separate tax rate for cannabis stores: Panasiuk said council has no intention of doing so.

If anyone is interested in seeing the full documents, council has copies of its proposed bylaws at the town office.

CAO Brian Martinson told the audience he has received two inquiries about cannabis stores in High Prairie.


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