EDITORIAL: The misconceptions of the Comox cannabis ban

The party isn’t cancelled; council just wants a delay

Do you remember the 1984 movie, Footloose?

The flick was about a town (Bomont) which, through the efforts of a local minister, prohibited dancing, and rock music.

Welcome to Comox: the 21st-century version of Bomont.

The local minister in this case is town council.

The dancing and rock music? Cannabis.

Town council has given first and second reading to Bylaw 1880, which would effectively prohibit the retail sale of cannabis anywhere within the town limits.

Council is holding a public hearing on Wednesday (April 4) at d’Esterre House, and if social media reaction is any indication, there will be a lot of public on hand, wanting to be heard.

The immediate reaction to the news is mostly disgust, but much of it is due to an apparent misunderstanding of the bylaw’s purpose.

Mayor Paul Ives informed The Record that the prohibition is being suggested mostly to keep order to the process. According to the mayor, the intent is not to have an infinite ban on cannabis; it’s strictly so that the Town is not inundated with business licence requests on July 1, with no plan of action in place.

There are many considerations to address before allowing cannabis retail stores free reign: how far should they be from elementary schools? Distance from daycares? Should they be adjacent to liquor outlets? Will there be restricted hours of operation?

Once town planners derive a set of guidelines covering all the areas of concern, the plan is to revisit Bylaw 1880, and amend it for the allowance of retail cannabis operations under a set of conditions.

The conspiracy theorists and the pessimists are convinced that the Town has no intentions of ever amending the bylaw, and the only way to avoid a total, infinite ban of cannabis in Comox is to crush this bylaw before it gets into the books.

We are of a less catastrophic mindset.

Whether or not an actual bylaw is needed in order to slow the natural glacial speed of the bureaucratic process in any municipality is arguable.

But we have been assured that once the proper blueprint is in place, there will be legal cannabis in Comox… and dancing in the streets.

–Terry Farrell

Just Posted

Comox Valley medical cannabis business growing despite impending legalization

With nearly a month to go until new cannabis legalization laws come… Continue reading

Humpback whales visit Cape Lazo

Peter Hamilton with Lifeforce Ocean Friends snapped these photos of some humpback… Continue reading

Valley Father-daughter duo share a special bond over a kidney

Annual kidney walk is set for Sept. 23 at Simms Park

Stolen Victoria vehicle crashes in Black Creek

On Sept. 15, 2018 at approximately 10:45 p.m., the Comox Valley RCMP… Continue reading

Courtenay getting a tool library

New facility allows do-it-yourselfers to borrow tools

64 cats seized from ‘bad situation’ now in BC SPCA care

The surrender is part of an ongoing animal cruelty investigation with BC SPCA Special Constable

B.C. hockey product eyes shot at Olympic spot with China

Fletcher is one of 24 who travelled to Shenzhen, China for the first official Olympic dev camp.

Are you feeling lazy? That’s OK – it’s just science

UBC study shows that humans are hardwired to prefer being sloth-like

LETTER: Who do we blame for the tragedy of Marrisa Shen’s death?

The B.C. girl was killed in a Burnaby park last July

Competition tribunal to hear B.C.-based case on airline food starting in October

The competition commissioner argued Vancouver airport authority had exploited its market position

Trudeau says Canada wants to see ‘movement’ before signing revised NAFTA deal

Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland is back in Washington in search of a way to bridge divide

Seek compromise with U.S. on cannabis at border, lawyers urge Ottawa

U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency sent tremors through Canada’s burgeoning cannabis sector

Wet weather means all types of burning, forest use OK in Coastal region

Campfires, open fires no larger than two metres by three metres, and all types of forest use allowed

Young people need us to act on climate change, McKenna tells G7 ministers

Catherine McKenna led off the three-day Halifax gathering Wednesday

Most Read