File photo courtesy of © Can Stock Photo / SoruEpotok

Council calls for cannabis collaboration

Sarnia council wants the public consulted so the new council for the next term can make an informed decision on the private sale of cannabis.

Council has directed staff to prepare a report on the provincial government’s option for municipalities to opt out of the Cannabis Retail Corporation Act.

Councillor Cindy Scholten said they’ve asked that the report include background on the retail act, a list of pros and cons, input from local public health officials, and public questions or concerns from an online survey.

“This is not about where the stores will be,” said Scholten. “The provincial government will regulate the how and where, and that information won’t come to us until they complete their consultation later this year. So, I think at this point the action step is about gathering information, gathering community input, being proactive so at least Sarnia is at least ready for when that consultation process does begin.”

Representatives from other provinces who have already legalized private marijuana sales will be consulted on their human resources policies, enforcement and budget pressures.

Council has also asked that staff refer an operating budget contingency to the 2019 budget process as more information becomes available.