Marijuana petition group will not be at Marine Fest

NANAIMO – A group campaigning to de-criminalize marijuana possession has been denied booth space at one of Nanaimo's largest festivals.

A group campaigning to de-criminalize marijuana possession has been denied booth space at one of Nanaimo’s largest festivals.

Sensible B.C., a group led by marijuana activist Dana Larsen, proposes an amendment to the Police Act that would disallow police in B.C. to spend any time, money or resources on cases of simple possession of cannabis.

Elections B.C. has given approval in principal for the group to lead a petition drive and starting Sept. 9, Sensible B.C. will have 90 days to collect signatures from at least 10 per cent of registered provincial voters in each of the province’s 85 electoral districts to trigger a referendum, as was done to repeal the HST.

Larsen said a while ago, the group booked a booth at the Nanaimo Marine Festival July 26-28 in Maffeo Sutton Park and the cheque was cashed, but then last week the group was told that it couldn’t have the booth after all and the money was returned.

“We think that’s kind of odd and unfair,” he said. “We were always clear about what we were doing. We’re at a lot of events this summer to drum up awareness.”

Bill McGuire, commodore with the Loyal Nanaimo Bathtub Society, said organizers try to stay away from politics and religion as well as anything that could be controversial at the festival and the group’s mandate does not fit with what the festival is all about.

“We don’t try to say no to anything, but also we’re putting on an event that’s family-oriented and that has no place in our event,” he said. “We just felt that that one didn’t fit the bill.”

The society made a mistake in allowing the application initially, McGuire added, and will look at how to prevent something like this from happening again.

Just Posted

Nanaimo hotel tax set to go up

Hospitality association lays out five-year plan for tourism in Nanaimo

Tour de Rock ready to start making its way down Vancouver Island

Tour de Rock takes place Sept. 21 to Oct. 4

Public meeting will explore ideas to battle addiction and crime in Nanaimo

Organizers call for treatment centres, accountability for crimes, citizens’ task force

VIU students empowered to ‘shift the vote’ this election

VIU Students’ Union, B.C. Federation of Students launch ‘Our Time is Now’ campaign

Nanaimo-Ladysmith candidates ‘disappointed’ with prime minister over blackface

Situation a ‘nightmare’ for Trudeau and the Liberals, says VIU professor

Handgun crackdown, health spending and transit plans latest campaign promises

Friday was the end of a busy week on the campaign trail

Beefs & Bouquets, Sept. 19

To submit a beef or a bouquet to the Nanaimo News Bulletin, e-mail

Nanaimo athletes earn gold, silver, bronze at 55-Plus B.C. Games

Huge contingent of local participants competed in largest-ever 55-Plus B.C. Games in Kelowna

Nanaimo beekeepers take down nest of giant hornets

One nest eradicated at Robins Park, but there are still Asian giant hornets around

One-in-five British Columbians think they’ll win big while gambling: study

Roughly 58 per cent of British Columbians bought at least one lottery ticket in past year

Takaya, B.C.’s infamous lone wolf, seen eating seal and howling away on Discovery Island

Fun facts about Takaya the wolf, like his a 36-hour tour around Chatham, Discovery Islands

Resident finds loaded shotgun inside a duffle bag in Kelowna alleyway

RCMP seized a loaded 12-gauge shotgun, ammunition, clothing and other items

Graffiti, calls and Snapchat: RCMP probe string of threats targeting Kamloops schools

There have been nine different threats made to four different schools in the city

Oak Bay father’s testimony at murder trial like plot of ‘bad low-budget movie:’ Crown

Crown alleged Andrew Berry’s ‘entire story of Christmas Day is a lie’

Most Read