Premiers Want More Clarity From Federal Government on Cannabis Legalization

Article by Dean Bennett, Globe and Mail

Premiers want more clarity from federal government on cannabis legalization

Canada’s premiers say the federal government needs to provide more clarity as they work to craft rules on legalizing marijuana — or Ottawa will face a call for a delay.

“It’s great that the prime minister wants to stick to his deadline. That’s super-duper,” Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister said Wednesday at the closing news conference of the leaders’ annual summer meeting.

 “He needs to then hear what the premiers of his country — our country — have said we need help with. There are a number of significant and serious public policy issues here. They need to be addressed. They should be addressed co-operatively.”

The federal government plans to pass legislation that would legalize cannabis as of July 1 next year.

The premiers have formed a working group to identify common concerns, seek answers from Ottawa and to provide recommendations by November on how to move forward.

It is up to the provinces to develop rules in their jurisdictions on how cannabis will be distributed and sold, what public places it will be allowed in and what the minimum age to buy it should be.

Pallister on Tuesday pushed for a one-year delay given what he called the sheer amount of work and unanswered questions over how legalized marijuana could affect Canadians.

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