Windsor police chief Al Frederick, February 12, 2016. (Photo by Jason Viau)

Frederick: Legal Pot Will Challenge Windsor

Windsor’s police chief says his officers will be challenged once marijuana is legal in Canada.

Chief Al Frederick says once pot becomes legal nationwide, it may present some unique tasks to a border town such as Windsor.

Frederick tells BlackburnNewsWindsor.com that the service has acknowledged the challenges legalised pot will bring.

“Will there be additional stresses on Windsor police? I think there will be,” says Frederick.

City councillor Jo-Anne Gignac had criticised the province during last week’s council meeting over its distribution of transitional funding to municipalities.

Last month, the province laid out its plan to help municipalities deal with the transition to legal pot use. It calls for $40-million of revenue from the federal excise duty tax, payable over two years, to help towns and cities deal with the implementation costs.

Gignac said the proposed use of a ratio based on number of households per municipality will end up hurting Windsor, considering its unique status as a border city.

While the chief has not specifically said he agrees with Gignac that Windsor may be getting shortchanged, he does agree that Windsor will soon see an increase in American tourists, particularly because of the novelty of legal weed.

“I absolutely believe that there will be a larger influx of people from the United States to take advantage of the legalised pot in Canada,” says Frederick.

The Ontario government says the transitional funding will accomplish several things, such as specifically increasing law enforcement’s capability to issue sobriety tests, creating a legal team to prosecute people caught driving while high, and setting up intelligence to shut down illegal pot retailers.