Growth of medicinal marijuana to be permitted in new bylaw amendment

Effective next April, product can be grown in industrial zone.

Nanaimo city council approved the first two readings of a bylaw last week that will permit the growing and production of marijuana for medicinal purposes in the industrial (I4) zone.

Council made the decision after receiving updated information on changes in the federal regulation of medicinal marijuana.

Effective April 1, 2014, the growing of medicinal marijuana is permitted under the Marijuana for Medicinal Purposes Regulation, which is regulated by Health Canada.

Medicinal marijuana growing and production is defined by Health Canada as “the growing and production of marijuana to be used exclusively for medicinal purposes, as permitted under the MMPR.”

Medical marijuana is also permitted as an agriculture use within the rural resource and urban reserve zones, as the provincial Agriculture Land Commission has determined the growing of the product is considered an agriculture use.

Staff and council updated the zoning bylaw and definition of agriculture permits for clarity.