The owner of a Kimberley medical-marijuana dispensary has mixed feelings about the latest details on how BC will regulate recreational weed.
The BC Government unveiled more policy plans Monday ahead of federal legalization in July.
Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth announced legal weed will be sold online, and through both government-run and private stores.
Tamarack Dispensaries owner Tamara Duggan says there are several positives and negatives so far, but overall she believes BC is heading in the right direction.
Duggan agrees with rules preventing retailers from selling marijuana in the same stores as liquor and tobacco.
In urban areas, licensed retailers will only be allowed to sell cannabis and cannabis accessories, and will be prohibited from selling other products, such as food, gas, clothing and lottery.
The BC Government says rural areas will require a different approach as it may be harder for residents to access marijuana products.
The criteria for rural applicants is currently under development.
She also lauds decisions like adults 19 years of age and older will be able to possess up to 30 grams in public and marijuana use will be allowed in public spaces where tobacco smoking and vaping are permitted.
The province won’t cap retail licenses but licences will not be issued without the support of local governments.
Duggan believes this will work in her favor as her business already exists and the City of Kimberley is obviously not opposed to it..
The Kimberley entrepreneur’s main issue is the province has yet to make any mention of so-called “craft-growers” throughout this process.
She claims roughly 50,000 British Columbians earn a living in the illegal cannabis industry and they shouldn’t be forgotten during legalization.
Not only that but Duggan suggests if done properly those resources could be transitioned into the legal framework and become a major boost to the provincial economy.
At the end of the day, Duggan is still leery about the BC Government getting into this business and the possibilities of a two-tier system being created between public and private retailers.
When it comes to this issues, she believes Victoria should be focused on governing and not profiting.
Duggan suggests the ICBC debacle is a perfect example of why the legal marijuana industry should be private.
– Tamarack Dispensaries Owner Tamara Duggan