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Enderby takes stand on medical marijuana

Enderby is saying no to growing marijuana.

Council voted Monday to prohibit the production of medicinal marijuana in rural, commercial and industrial zones.

“We don’t want them in our community,” said Mayor Howie Cyr.

“We don’t have the capacity or even the industrial land for them. They would be pretty massive operations and we don’t have the space.”

Federal regulations are shifting marijuana production from home-based settings to large operations and that is creating planning challenges for municipalities and regional districts.

Among the concerns about such operations are odour and traffic.

Officials are also focused on security and the potential for such facilities to possibly attract criminal activity.

“The new regulations from the government have restricted grow-ops to drug money,” said Coun. Earl Shipmaker, adding that small entrepreneurs won’t have access to the necessary resources to open the operations.

The only prospect of marijuana production in Enderby could be on property within the Agricultural Land Reserve because it would be inconsistent with the provincial Agricultural Commission’s policies.

“However, the ALC Act allows local governments to place certain restrictions on farm uses on agricultural lands without necessarily being inconsistent with the act or its regulations provided that these restrictions are not such that they can be interpreted as being prohibitory,” said Kurt Inglis, assistant corporate officer.

There is also the possibility that such operations could be built in the surrounding rural area outside of Enderby’s boundaries.

“Even then, we would probably express our opposition,” said Cyr.

“We don’t see a net community value unless it employs a ton of people.”

 

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