In April, the federal government introduced legislation to legalize the use of marijuana in Canada which it intends to pass by July 2018.
“It’s too soon,” Pallister told reporters during a press conference at the Council of the Federation in Edmonton Tuesday. “There are a tremendous number of unanswered questions there, not least of them, may be some of the potential trade impacts.
“When we were in D.C. recently, I was asking Homeland Security officials questions about how the discovery of a remnant of a joint in an ashtray of a truck would affect the driver, the company, the subsequent transit rules, the penalties, etc. and wasn’t getting answers.”
On Wednesday, Pallister, alongside Alberta Premier Rachel Notley, will co-chair a panel on marijuana legalization where he will encourage Canada’s other premiers to push the feds for an extension.
“The provinces will do the bulk of the heavy lifting,” Pallister said. “The federal government, I think, should give serious consideration to letting us make sure, as a country, that there is minimal loss of opportunity and minimal loss of life or injury as a result of the changes being proposed.”
“I think there are too many unanswered questions, to many issues that have not been addressed for us to rush into what is an historic change.”
Pallister wouldn’t commit to a legal age for marijuana users when the age of 18 was suggested.
“I will make the commitment to you that we will be discussing this as premiers and I would hope that we can come up with something better than the hodgepodge arrangement we have with alcohol across the country.”