In April 2017, the Government of Canada introduced Bill C-45 (the Cannabis Act) and Bill C-46 (the Act to amend the Criminal Code), and non-medical (i.e. recreational) cannabis became legal in Canada on October 17, 2018. The SLRD adopted regulatory updates in May 2018, in preparation for cannabis legalization. These regulatory updates presented an incremental approach to the regulation of cannabis in the Electoral Areas – maintaining the status quo for both retail and production while providing for consideration of new uses through the site-specific zoning amendment process. In addition to these regulatory updates, the SLRD sought public feedback through an online survey.
Current SLRD Cannabis Regulatory Approach
The SLRD took the following approach in preparation for cannabis legalization:
- Update SLRD Electoral Area Zoning Bylaws – adopted May 23, 2018. These zoning amendments provided an incremental approach to the regulation of cannabis in the SLRD Electoral Areas – maintaining the status quo (where cannabis retailing remains an unpermitted use in all zones and cannabis production is permitted in some zones) for both retail and production while considering new uses through site-specific zoning amendment processes (See December 19, 2018 Staff Report below for full details).
- Seek Public Feedback – the SLRD initiated an online survey as a way to seek public feedback on cannabis regulations which would help to inform the Board. This survey is now closed and the results are available here.
- Develop and Implement Regulations – To come. Now that cannabis is legal and regulated under the Cannabis Act, the SLRD may undertake further regulatory updates.
Cannabis Regulatory Updates - proposed for 2019
- Revise cannabis production regulations (ALR only) to align with new ALR regulations in which only soil-based cannabis production is considered a farm use;
- Develop a policy for Micro Cannabis Production (micro processing and cultivation) in order to support the review of site-specific zoning requests; and,
- Maintain the current approach for cannabis retail, in which a site-specific zoning amendment is required.
- SLRD Cannabis Regulations – Public Survey and ALC Updates - December 19, 2018
- Zoning Amendment Bylaw No. 1544-2017, No. 1545-2017, 1546-2017 and No. 1547-2017 – Cannabis Regulations - May 23, 2018
- Zoning Amendment Bylaw No. 1544-2017, No. 1545-2017, 1546-2017 and No. 1547-2017 – Cannabis Regulations - April 18, 2018