Vernon could be getting a BC Cannabis Store

Vernon could be getting its own BC Cannabis Store in the future. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward

Right now, the only provincially operated BC Cannabis Store is in Kamloops, but Vernon could eventually be added to the list.

The City of Vernon said that one of the 10 applications it has received for civic cannabis business licences is for a provincial government store.

The city said the proposal is to locate the store in the north end of Vernon.

Seven of the other applications for cannabis business licences are almost ready to come before city council.

The city said those applications could potentially be on the city council’s agendas on March 25 and April 8.

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According to civic documents, those businesses are looking to set up downtown, in Vernon’s north end, on 27 Street and Okanagan Landing Road.

The city is conducting its public consultation process on these applications via written response.

Before an application for a cannabis business licence comes before council, the city is providing written notification to those who own businesses or live within a 30-metre radius around the proposed cannabis business.

WATCH: Global Okanagan coverage of cannabis legalization

Those who live and work in the area then have three weeks to submit written comments on the proposal to city hall.

Before a marijuana storefront can legally operate in Vernon, it needs both a civic cannabis business licence and a provincial non-medical cannabis retail licence.

Even with applicants moving through the civic process, it could still be some time before a legal marijuana storefront opens in Vernon.

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At points prior to cannabis legalization, Vernon has had upwards of a dozen marijuana storefronts.

However, many Vernon pot shops shut their doors around the time of legalization to play by the rules during the provincial licensing process.

Currently, there is only one provincial government store located in Kamloops.

However, at the beginning of February, the provincial Liquor Distribution Branch said six other cities, including Salmon Arm, had given the province the go-ahead to set up BC Cannabis Stores in their communities.

The province said Kamloops had also granted the OK for a second and third government shop in the city.

When it comes to private sales, there are currently 14 marijuana storefronts provincially licensed to operate in B.C, none of which are in the Okanagan.

One is in Kamloops and another is in Salmon Arm.

Alberta had 19 marijuana shops licensed to operate on legalization day last October.


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