The Need For Weed: Canadian Federation of Independent Business Wants NLC to Stay Out of Marijuana Business

Article by CBC News

The need for weed: Business federation wants NLC to stay out of marijuana business CFIB's Vaughn Hammond says private sector can reach all areas of the province cost-efficiently. When marijuana is legalized in Canada next year, the Newfoundland and Labrador branch of the Canadian Federation of Independent Business wants the provincial government to leave retailing up to the private sector. (Eric Engman/Fairbanks Daily News-Miner/The Associated Press)

The provincial wing of the Canadian Federation of Independent Business has its eye on marijuana legalization next summer, and it wants the Newfoundland and Labrador Liquor Corporation to stay in its own lane.

Vaughn Hammond, director of provincial affairs for the Newfoundland and Labrador branch of the federation, told CBC’s On the Go Tuesday that the NLC should leave marijuana retailing up to the private sector.

Hammond said the NLC, as a provincial corporation, is already in a conflict of interest as the government both sets the rules on alcohol retailing, and does the retailing itself, a model he doesn’t want to see anywhere near marijuana.

“They’re the ones that are enforcing the regulations on themselves, essentially, as retailers,” he said.

“They determine who sells it, they determine when it’s sold, what’s sold, that kind of thing. So if they’re the ones that are enforcing regulations, we feel that it should be rather separated. The provincial government’s role is to develop and maintain and enforce regulations, and the private sector should be the ones involved in the retail of cannabis once it’s legalized next year.”

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