City council committee discusses how late to allow cannabis stores to stay open in Edmonton – Edmonton

Edmonton city councillors will vote next week on how late to allow stores to sell recreational marijuana and one councillor says he believes the city should be “fairly conservative about the closing hours.”

“Whether 11 p.m. or 10 p.m. is the right answer, it’s hard to say, and it’s something we have a week to think about,” Councillor Michael Walters said on Tuesday.

City staff are proposing councillors approve a plan that would see stores selling pot close no later than 11 p.m.

Walters said he’s considering proposing an amendment ahead of the vote to make the closing time 10 p.m. because of “concerns from an enforcement perspective and public health perspective when people co-consume.”

Walters was referring to concerns raised by Dr. Gloria Keays, a medical officer of health with Alberta Health Services (AHS), about people using more than one kind of substance that can be intoxicating. Keays also suggested the city consider only allowing stores selling cannabis to be open for a limited number of hours per day.

“The administration’s report to limit hours to about 12 hours of the day seems a reasonable beginning point,” she said.

READ MORE: Edmonton committee to debate permit, licensing fees for recreational pot shops

Watch below: In April, Julia Wong filed this report about a report heading to an Edmonton committee for debate that recommends the development permit and licensing fees for cannabis stores should cost applicants $8,100.

 

Also on Tuesday, a city council committee recommended a startup fee of $8,100 for cannabis shops wanting to open in Edmonton. The startup fee includes a $2,500 annual business licence fee. The committee said the price could go down after a business review is conducted in 2020.

Walters said with the large number of entrepreneurs applying to open up cannabis shops, he doesn’t see price being a barrier.

READ MORE: 452 applications received so far for Alberta cannabis retail stores

Watch below: On April 20, 2018, Kim Smith filed this report about how this year’s 4/20 celebration is expected to be the last one before recreational marijuana becomes legal.

 

Council is set to vote on the hours of cannabis stores and startup fees next week.

-With files from 630 CHED’s Scott Johnston and Global News’ Kendra Slugoski

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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