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

Update: Surrey RCMP have identified the elderly woman who was found wandering in Surrey

Public asked to help identify South Asian woman who is not able to communicate with police

UPDATE: Strong winds, rain knock out power to thousands in Lower Mainland

More than 34,000 BC Hydro customers in the dark on Sunday morning in region and Sunshine Coast

Semiahmoo wins Surrey RCMP Basketball Classic for second straight year

Totems’ senior boys battle back to top Tamanawis in tourney final at Enver Creek Saturday

Flavourful journey through the city

BIA’s Taste White Rock event returns

WIND WARNING: Metro Vancouver expecting 100 km/h gusts Saturday night

Environment Canada issues warns of possibly dangerous conditions

VIDEO: Surrey reviewing Clayton crosswalk after pedestrian hit

The city says investigation in response to safety concerns from local resident

Coquihalla drivers prepare for snow

Wintry conditions persist, with snow warnings for Coquihalla

Liberals quietly tap experts to write new paternity leave rules

Ideas include creating an entirely new leave benefit similar to one that exists in Quebec

Insurers say Canadian weather getting hotter, wetter and weirder

Average number of days with heavy rain or snow across Canada has been outside norm since spring 2013

Final phase of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy trials to kick off in B.C.

Doctors hope to get psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy legalized in Canada and the U.S. by 2021

VIDEO: Vancouver Giants blanked by Portland Winterhawks

Saturday’s 2-0 setback marks first regulation loss for G-Men in 10 games

VIDEO: Thousands join women’s march events across B.C.

Today marks one year since the first Women’s March on Washington

VIDEO: Remember the Voyageurs at Fort Langley

Two-day historical festival underway

Two Canadians, two Americans abducted in Nigeria are freed

Kidnapping for ransom is common in Nigeria, especially on the Kaduna to Abuja highway

Most Read