Article by Philip Authier, Montreal Gazette
Growing pot at home in Quebec could land you a ticket from police because it will be illegal under the prevailing provincial cannabis law, the minister responsible for the legislation said Wednesday.
But Lucie Charlebois questioned why Quebecers would even bother cultivating at home when Quebec will make high-quality legal product available in a few months at government-run cannabis stores around the corner.
With the federal government announcing Wednesday it will be legal for Canadians to puff on Oct. 17 following the adoption earlier this week of the federal bill on the purchase and consumption of recreational marijuana, Charlebois said she wanted to remind Quebecers that growing pot at home is not permitted.
“I say to Quebecers, the law was adopted in Quebec and it says zero plants,” Charlebois said arriving for a meeting of the Quebec cabinet. “I say to Quebecers, be vigilant. It’s the Quebec law which prevails.”
Over the last few weeks the issue has risen to a full blown federal-provincial jurisdictional dispute, but Charlebois herself noted that Ottawa appeared to soften its tone Wednesday when it came to applying the law.
Earlier in Ottawa, federal Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould and federal Health Minister Ginette Petitpas Taylor, held their own news conference where they called the passage of Bill C-45 a historic moment for Canada because it puts an end to a century of prohibition.
They tried to address the confusion over home growing. While Ottawa’s bill allows Canadians to grow as many as four plants at home for their own consumption, Quebec’s bill applying the law, Bill 157, does not permit it.