Vernon council has opted for a 500-metre buffer zone for new cannabis retail outlets from existing operations throughout the city. (File photo)

Vernon council has opted for a 500-metre buffer zone for new cannabis retail outlets from existing operations throughout the city. (File photo)

Vernon buffer zone established for retail cannabis

Council votes 6-1 to adopt 500-metre proximity for outlets in all parts of the city

A conversation with a client convinced Vernon Coun. Kari Gares that a 500-metre proximity between all cannabis retail stores in the city is needed.

Gares motioned to accept a staff recommendation for such a new buffer zone throughout the city. The other option before council was to exclude the Business Improvement Areas (BIAs) from the buffer proximity.

“My client, who is in the cannabis sector, is absolutely in favour (of the buffer zone for all stores),” said Gares. “Some cannabis retailers have been quite vocal about the over-saturation of the market place…There are a lot of retailers operating within Greater Vernon. This regulates it evenly throughout the City of Vernon.”

The lone dissent vote in passing the staff recommendation came from Mayor Victor Cumming.

“I think we need more commercial stuff in the commercial core, and I thought we did a good job regulating BIA one (downtown Vernon),” said Cumming. “We indicated we would limit the stores to six and that matches what makes good sense there. We’re not trying to spill out commercial areas throughout the city every 500 metres.”

Gares’ motion passed by a margin of six to one.

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Cannabis LegislationCity Council