After asking politely last month, Brock Township council is now demanding answers from the federal government on the regulations surrounding the cultivation of medicinal cannabis.
At Monday’s (Jan. 21) meeting of the planning and economic development committee, members of council unanimously passed a motion requesting that Health Canada not renew any applications until municipal concerns about odour control and security are met.
“I’m not going to going to wait for Health Canada,” said Mayor Debbie Bath-Hadden as she brought the motion forward.
Last month, local politicians requested a meeting with Health Canada related to concerns surrounding a medicinal cannabis operation on Concession 11. A second facility, located on Concession 4 Thorah, was robbed at gunpoint back in October.
“We’ve had security issues in Brock. We’ve had odour control issues in Brock,” Mayor Bath-Hadden said.
In addition to the two local sites that are already up-and-running, Mayor Bath-Hadden also noted last month that she’s heard rumblings that a medicinal cannabis company has also expressed an interest in a 200-acre property in the Beaverton area.
“We’re not suggesting – we’re demanding – that they not renew another license until we get the information we asked for,” Mayor Bath-Hadden said.
While Township staff have reached out to Health Canada, no response has been received.
“The federal government is not always that forthcoming,” CAO/Clerk Thom Gettinby told members of council.
“I think this (motion) might get their attention,” quipped Ward 5 Councillor Lynn Campbell.
In addition, council has directed staff to look into the possibility of passing an interim control bylaw that could put temporary freeze on new operations setting up shop in the municipality for up to two years while a policy review is conducted.
Mayor Bath-Hadden made it clear that council wasn’t looking to ban such facilities, they were simply making an effort to ensure that relevant regulations are being adhered to.
“We’re not saying ‘No’,” she said.
“This could prevent problems in the future,” added Coun. Campbell.