Ottawa Signals It Won’t Step In As Provinces Devise Marijuana Regulations

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Ottawa signals it won’t step in as provinces devise marijuana regulations Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale refused to weigh in Sunday on Ontario’s proposed plan, and indicated that the federal government would stay out of how provinces address marijuana legalization.

The federal government appears ready to take a hands-off approach as provinces begin rolling out how they plan to police the sale and use of marijuana once it becomes legal.

Ontario last week became the first province to unveil its plans for handling legalized pot by announcing that it would closely mimic the province’s current system for liquor.

Marijuana will be sold at 150 dedicated stores run by the Liquor Control Board of Ontario, it will only be sold by those aged 19 or over, and consumption will only be allowed in private residences.

Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale refused to weigh in Sunday on Ontario’s proposed plan, and indicated that the federal government would stay out of how provinces address marijuana legalization.

“Each province has the flexibility to design it the way they think most appropriate. Ontario has laid out their proposal. That’s within their jurisdiction to do,” he said.

“Other provinces, I would imagine now, will come forward with their recommendations. They may follow the Ontario model. They may choose a different approach.”

Goodale, who spoke to reporters following a ceremony to honour fallen firefighters in Ottawa, reaffirmed that the purpose of legalization is to keep pot away from minors and organized crime.

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