VICTORIA — Cannabis leaders are mostly praising B.C. government legislation introduced Thursday in anticipation of federal legalization, though they hope to see some perceived flaws nipped in the bud.
Solicitor General Mike Farnworth tabled three bills in the legislature that will amend different B.C. laws to pave the way for legal recreational cannabis later this year. Ottawa had said legalization could occur by July 1 but it now appears likely to be delayed beyond that date. B.C. said it expects to open its first government-operated retail store by late summer, followed by online sales.
“This bill represents a balanced response to the federal government’s decision to legalize non-medical cannabis,” said Farnworth.
The legislation formalizes many of the details the B.C. government had indicated in February as it began grappling with the cannabis issue. They include a legal purchase age of at least 19, stand-alone public and private cannabis stores, which are not allowed to sell alcohol or tobacco alongside the cannabis, a provincial distribution network handled by the Liquor Distribution Branch and a personal possession limit of 30 grams for