The City of Dawson Creek is open for business — marijuana business.
On Monday, council voted to adopt an amendment to the zoning bylaw to remove the prohibition of retail cannabis sale and production clause, which was put in earlier this year.
It turns out, in hindsight, the clause was unnecessary.
“When we originally did the prohibition, there was not a lot of certainty on process. What we now understand is the Province will require any local government to give their blessing on any licences for dispensaries,” says CAO Duncan Redfearn. “At that time it was unclear whether the Province would be requesting the City’s blessing, and the recommendation from our legal was that we put a prohibition in to ensure that nobody can open a store without Council’s approval. Since then, they’ve come forward saying they need the City’s blessing.”
When the first two readings were passed earlier this month, Redfearn noted staff were working on a procedure for a public process for such applications.
On Monday, Redfearn noted there was interest.
“We have applications in front of us, the province has been in contact,” he says.
On Tuesday, the City announced the first application — Starbuds — intended to be located at Dawson Creek Mall.
Redfearn says that after public notice, council will likely see the first application at the November 19 meeting.
“We do have other groups interested, and we’re trying to be as straightforward and streamline this process as much as possible.”