January 24, 2018 7:08 pm
Updated: January 25, 2018 12:45 pm

Strathcona County amends bylaws for cannabis production facilities

A file photo of a marijuana plant.

Joe Mahoney / The Canadian Press
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EDITOR’S NOTE: This article previously suggested the bylaw amendment gave Strathcona County more power over where cannabis production facilities can be located. A county spokesperson has clarified this is not the case and the article has since been corrected.

Strathcona County council has voted to give cannabis production facilities a new definition, however, the process for companies applying for permits to operate such facilities in the region will still see them apply for them under a discretionary use designation.

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Previously, cannabis production facilities were interpreted as falling under the county’s agriculture intensive horticulture definition.

On Tuesday, council voted in support of a proposed amendment to define “cannabis production facility.” The amendment adds the facilities to the list of discretionary uses in medium industrial zoning districts and agricultural zoning districts.

LISTEN: Aaron Barr with Canadian Rockies Agricultural Ltd. talks to guest host Shaye Ganam on the Ryan Jespersen Show on 630 CHED

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A spokesperson pointed out the facilities were previously also on those lists but under the agriculture intensive horticulture definition.

“The amendment also ensures Strathcona County supports innovation and remains competitive in the region,” Mayor Rod Frank said in a news release on Wednesday. “We want to continue to be open for business and diversification and stay true to our Agriculture Master Plan.”

If a company is granted a development permit, the county said the applicant still has to apply to the federal government for a licence and other regulatory approvals before production can get underway.

Strathcona County council does not approve permits, instead the county’s development authority is tasked with that.

READ MORE: Strathcona County addresses cannabis production facilities, plans to amend land-use bylaw

Watch below: On Dec. 17, 2017, Kim Smith filed this report about how Strathcona County is preparing for the legalization of recreational marijuana.

For more information on Strathcona County’s strategy for dealing with the legalization of recreational cannabis, click here.

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

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