Article by Joan Bryden, CTV News
Municipalities will have to grapple with a host of thorny issues once recreational cannabis is legalized in Canada – but it’s the matter of home-grown marijuana plants that’s expected to cause them the biggest headaches.
The Federation of Canadian Municipalities has developed a guide to legalization, released Monday, to help identify the challenges and regulatory options for dealing with them that municipal governments across the country will face once the prohibition on cannabis use is lifted later this year.
The federation warns that developing the rules governing legal cannabis production, sales and consumption could involve as many as 17 different municipal departments covering everything from land use and zoning to business licensing and public consumption.
But the guide singles out the proposed federal law’s provision allowing a residential dwelling to grow up to four marijuana plants as the most problematic.
“The issue of home cultivation of cannabis – even with a four-plant limit in place – is one that will require public consultation,” the guide says.
“It is also the issue that will be the most challenging for municipalities to decide on whether to develop a regulatory response. … Of all the regulations that might be considered in relation to the legalization of cannabis, this one has the potential to generate the greatest number of enforcement complaints.”