Council wants more information before deciding if cannabis edibles can be legal in the city

News 100 blueBy Pepper Parr

February 27th, 2020

BURLINGTON, ON

 

The province appeared to be ready to legalize the sale of cannabis based edibles – they wanted to get feedback from the public and specifically the municipal sector on:

cannabis ‘lounges’ where people could buy and consume cannabis; and

cannabis at festivals and events through the Special Occasion Permit (SOP) process, similar to how alcohol is allowed at events.

Burlington approved the opening of cannabis retail stores in the city with certain limitations – the most significant being how close these establishments were to schools.
Five of the seven members of Council voted for the idea: Councillors Bentivegna and Stolte were opposed.

At this point there are four commercial operations in the city with a fifth due to open soon.

The city wanted to know what the public thought and they put a survey up on the GET INVOLVED portal the city has. The survey was open for a short period of time between February 14th and February 23rd, seeking input on the future of cannabis sale and use in consumption venues such as cannabis ‘lounges’ and at public events such as outdoor festivals and concerts and found that:

969 respondents:-50% were in favour of allowing the sale and consumption of cannabis in places like cannabis lounges and cafés (5% undecided, 45% not in favour).

lounge suvey

57% were not in favour of allowing the sale and consumption of cannabis at festivals and events such as music or food festivals, etc. (3% undecided, 40% in favour)

67% felt that municipalities should be able to decide/govern the sale and consumption of cannabis in cafés and lounges (11% undecided, 23% not in favour)

SOP headingSOP pie chart72% felt that municipalities should be able to decide/govern the sale and consumption of cannabis at special events (7% undecided, 21% not in favour)

Question optionsThe province wanted public reaction in hand by March 10th – which pushed the city administration a bit. They felt they didn’t have enough information to take a position on February 24th and decided to defer the motion until March 9th when they will squeeze a City Council meeting into a scheduled Standing Committee meeting.

The motion that was deferred read as follows:

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED THAT:

The Council of the City of Burlington is open to the sale and consumption of edible cannabis products in additional locations such as cannabis lounges so long as these locations do not also permit the sale and consumption of alcohol nor conflict with our existing distance criteria for retail cannabis store locations.

The City of Burlington does not support the sale or consumption of any cannabis products in public spaces or at public events such as outdoor festivals and concerts.

We ask the government of Ontario to allow municipalities to make their own local decisions on these matters and permissions.

We ask the government of Ontario to ensure that no additional permissions on the use of cannabis would be granted in such a manner as to contravene the Smoke-Free Ontario Act of 2017 or any HaltonRegion bylaws that exist at the time of their decision.

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3 comments to Council wants more information before deciding if cannabis edibles can be legal in the city

  • Joe Pyche

    Burlington town council has made a serious mistake approving the opening of cannabis retail stores in the city.The mayor and the council had an opportunity to take a a strong stand on drug use and send a positive strong message to our youth and all citizens of our great city we call Burlington.Lets become a leader and not a follower for the hard and not always popular decisions that must be made to insure great future for our city.

  • Alan Harrington

    People have been consuming cannabis in Burlington for a loooo-ong time.

    Now that it’s legal, consumers should buy from legitimate companies, pay the tax and put the illegal supply chain out of business.

    With respect to people not having cannabis edibles in public spaces and events – how are the police going to enforce that? Especially if someone has a prescription for it???

  • Joe Gaetan

    “Canada is expected to become the first G7 nation to fully legalize marijuana by Friday, fulfilling a 2015 campaign promise of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.”. That was then, this is now. Here we are in 2020 talking about edibles but the toothpaste wont go back in the tube.

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