Stock photo

City of Nanaimo putting pot shop rules in place

Council expected to adopt cannabis production and sale bylaw at Oct. 1 meeting

Nanaimo won’t have legal pot shops to coincide with the legalization of marijuana next month, but those businesses may not be far away.

Nanaimo city council, a meeting next week, is expected to adopt a new zoning bylaw amendment around the sale and production of cannabis. There was a public hearing earlier this month on the topic and then council passed third reading of the bylaw on Sept. 17. Council also amended and advanced cannabis retail store rezoning criteria that same night.

“There is a number of proposed stores that are interested in making application now,” said Dale Lindsay, the city’s director of community development. “The province has opened up that opportunity where they can make an application. Until such time as the bylaw is approved and the guidelines are approved, we wouldn’t be in a position to take applications.”

Cannabis retail stores will need to be 200 metres from any school or daycare. The draft criteria called for 150m and the councillors alluded to the school district asking for 300m, but Coun. Bill Yoachim said council was overthinking the distances.

“I think schools should be more interested where [youths] are going to be smoking it than where they’re buying it,” he said, and referenced comments from the former provincial health officer.

“As Dr. [Perry] Kendall said – who’s quite a bit more profound than the one here that lectures us all the time – he said alcohol is way more dangerous than pot,” Yoachim said.

Council also removed from the criteria the proposed requirement that cannabis retail store applicants provide a market study, though they still need to prepare a community impact statement.

Coun. Jerry Hong expects applicants will come to the city with detailed applications.

“If somebody gives us the information that is professional, that is laid out, that is presented well, then we’ll have a lot more consideration. They’re going to do that on their own…” he said. “For us to force these rules on them, it’s a waste of time.”

RELATED: City of Nanaimo’s marijuana zoning regulations will go to a public hearing

RELATED: Nanaimo making plans for upcoming pot legalization

According to a city press release issued yesterday, the municipality requires applicants to meet with city staff and provide confirmation that a non-medical cannabis retail licence application has been filed with the province.

“Staff has worked hard to prepare for Oct. 17, but legalization is only the start,” said, Heidi Davidson, city manager of permit centre and business licensing, in the release. “Based on all the phone and e-mail enquiries, it’s anticipated that staff will be busy with pre-application meetings and processing rezoning and business licence applications once received.”

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Process to identify those killed in Gabriola plane crash could take days

Canadian flight museum suggests Alex Bahlsen of Mill Bay died in Tuesday’s crash

UPDATE: One person dead after crash on Nanaimo Lakes Road

One person dies, another was injured in the accident which happened at about noon Wednesday

Conservation officers put down fawn blinded by pellet gun in Nanaimo

Young deer found near construction site in Hammond Bay area

No survivors in Gabriola Island plane crash

Coroner confirms multiple fatalities after small plane goes down Tuesday night

Paul Manly votes against first Liberal confidence vote ‘based on principle’

Manly was the only opposition party member outside the Conservative party to vote against Bill C-2

UPDATE: One person dead after crash on Nanaimo Lakes Road

One person dies, another was injured in the accident which happened at about noon Wednesday

First Snuneymuxw Fight Night to be held at community gym

Eli Wyse facing Quesnel opponent in main event of boxing card Saturday, Dec. 14

GUEST COMMENT: City should stop catering to fast-food drive-thrus

Eliminate drive-thrus to improve safety and health and reduce emissions, says guest columnist

Dover Bay Secondary School drama program to stage ‘Addams Family’ musical

Production is first high school musical for teacher and some students

Laid-off forest workers converge on B.C. legislature

Loggers call for action on strike, provincial stumpage

‘Honest mistake:’ RCMP says B.C. cannabis shop can keep image of infamous Mountie

Sam Steele wearing military, not RCMP uniform in image depicted in Jimmy’s Cannabis window

B.C. guide fined $2K in first conviction under new federal whale protection laws

Scott Babcock found guilty of approaching a North Pacific humpback whale at less than 100 metres

Feds urge Air Canada to fix booking problems as travel season approaches

The airline introduced the new reservation system more than three weeks ago

Almost 14,000 Canadians killed by opioids since 2016: new national study

17,000 people have been hospitalized for opioid-related poisoning

Most Read