Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi wants to put off marijuana legalization until after Canada Day 2018.
The city’s Intergovernmental Affairs Committee is preparing a response to the province’s request for consultation as the federal government moves forward with marijuana legalization.
Currently, the plan is to have cannabis legalized by July 1, 2018.
But, Nenshi would like to see that happen on a different day.
“I’m probably being overly paranoid on this, but a public holiday when you’re inviting hundreds of thousands of people downtown is just not the best first day to try such a major policy change,” he said.
The mayor said he believes the legal age to use marijuana should be 21 and not 18.
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“I’m very convinced by the science that says that the use of cannabis on the developing brain is really a problem up until the early to mid 20s. Twenty-five is probably excessive, but I really continue to personally advocate 21 is the right thing.”
He also doesn’t want to see dispensaries or cannabis lounges on university or college campuses. He said he’s come to this opinion after working as a professor with students in the 18 to 22-year-old range.
Alberta Justice Minister Kathleen Ganley is looking to engage the public as the government attempts to develop a cannabis framework, which will outline the proposed next steps for Alberta.
She has asked municipalities for their opinions on the subject as well, as the new framework will have significant implications on the establishment of municipal regulations, policies and procedures.
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The city of Calgary said it wants to ensure revenues accrued from the legalization of marijuana flow to the city, so that it is able to deal with the extra costs associated with police enforcement of impaired driving due to marijuana and regulation.
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