B.C. cities strengthen call for bigger role in marijuana legalization

Convention delegates vote for more consultation and revenue sharing

Local politicians have cemented their desire for a bigger say in how legal marijuana will be regulated in their communities at the Union of B.C. Municipalities convention.

The lead resolution, which passed overwhelmingly on Wednesday, focused on giving local government a more active role in how the legalization process will play out in B.C., specifically in terms of consultation and revenue sharing.

READ: B.C. cities want more money, and more talk, on legal pot

VIDEO: B.C. to consult public on marijuana legalization

Earlier this week, Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth announced the province is asking for the public’s views on how the government should regulate the distribution and retail sales of the drug, as well as how to enforce marijuana impairment on the road.

This public consultation includes municipalities, though Farnworth said no revenue sharing agreement between the three levels of government had been reached yet.

Cities have long been concerned that increased policing and zoning costs will fall upon them once you can legally buy marijuana, without what they view as a fair share of the revenue.

Some leaders have also expressed worry over how soon marijuana will be legal. The federal Liberals, following Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s popular campaign promise, have pledged to do so by July 2018.

“We at the municipal level have said, ‘Slow down, we’re not ready,’” said Ladysmith Coun. Steve Arnett at the convention.

Arnett also introduced an amendment asking for proper safeguards across all levels of government to protect children and youth.

He told delegates he wasn’t opposed to legal pot from a “reefer madness” perspective, but was speaking out of concern that edible marijuana, such as cookies, could be too attractive to kids.

“Young people aren’t always able to make informed choices,” said Arnett, who spent more than three decades as a social worker.

Those protections were important, he said, “particularly as we go to edibles that appear to be benign because they look attractive and taste good.”


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Pandora supervised consumption site has busy first month

Site whose aim is to save lives takes on a new client-driven name: The Harbour

Victoria’s plastic bag ban inspires local entrepreneur to give back

Karebags a local, collaborative alternative for reusable bags, donates profits to charity

Project provides barrier to suicides at hospital parkade

VIHA budgets $650,000 for work at Royal Jubilee Hospital parkade

Our Place celebrates Christmas in July

Afternoon barbecue serves up turkey burgers and Santa hats under the hot sun

Pedestrian struck on Quadra Street

A pedestrian was struck by a vehicle on Quadra Street at Hulford… Continue reading

VIDEO: Trudeau shuffles familiar faces, adds new ones to expanded cabinet

Justin Trudeau shuffles his front bench Wednesday to install the roster of ministers that will be entrusted with leading the Liberal team into next year’s election.

Lower Mainland blueberry farms expect solid season

Blueberry Council of B.C. says season will be better than last year

B.C. to add hundreds of taxis, help cab companies modernize

Ride hailing companies have to wait until fall of 2019 to apply for licences

BC Summer Games ready to begin on Vancouver Island

More than 2,000 athletes will compete in 18 sports from Friday to Sunday

Plenty of heroes in Thai cave rescue, says B.C. diver

Erik Brown reflects on team effort that brought 12 boys and their coach to safety

Funding available to replace infected B.C. hazelnut trees

B.C. Hazelnut Growers to recieve $300,000 over three years to battle eastern filbert blight

Woman charged after eight dogs seized from hotel room

Sixteen dogs recently seized from Adams and her daughter in Quesnel

Owner of B.C. fruit stand recounts ‘flames popping up everywhere’ from wildfire

The Mount Eneas wildfire is burning at about 200 hectares south of Peachland

Ontario, Saskatchewan premiers join together to oppose federal carbon plan

Saskatchewan is already involved in a court case over the tax

Most Read