There could soon be legal cannabis shops popping up inside the District of Port Hardy.
Port Hardy council voted in favour of Bylaw No. 1080-2018 (Cannabis Regulations) at its July 10 council meeting, which means it is now officially law.
Local governments have a selectability underneath the province as to what they can do, but can: adjust zoning, create retail definitions, set guidelines on business licensing, and can enforce building codes. The District’s Cannabis Zoning Amendment Bylaw No. 1080-2018 will add new definitions of “cannabis”, “cannabis retailer”, and “urban agriculture”, which was updated to exclude the cultivation and sale of cannabis.
It also sets restrictions such as buffer zones that have to be at least 100 metres from a playground or public library; at least 150 metres from any education services, and at least 150 metres away from any daycare.
“We’re a progressive community, we got it done,” commented Mayor Hank Bood.
“Just so I don’t have a ton of people knocking on the door tomorrow wanting to put in their cannabis retail applications… until the province has rolled out their final say on the licensing, the district isn’t going to be entertaining business applications,” added Director of Corporate Services Heather Nelson-Smith.
Here is a list of what is known about cannabis legalization so far from the Province:
-Applications are going to be processed through the Liquor Control and Licensing B (LCBC) similarly to liquor licensing
– Background checks will be required
– Local government support will be required via resolution from council
– LCBC will not be licensing consumption lounges
– cannabis sales will only be permitted where its licensed and not offsite
– Minors under the age of 19 will not be permitted in cannabis retail stores
– No delivery or online dales of cannabis
– Business hours will be 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. (like liquor)
– Special training and employee background checks are still being created
– No off-site storage permitted.
Premier Justin Trudeau has stated cannabis will become legal in Canada as of Oct. 17, 2018.