Tony Le is owner of Green Era cannabis dispensary in Maple Ridge, one of many marijuana stores in B.C. (Neil Corbett/Black Press)

Which B.C. marijuana stores will survive?

Province will require background, criminal record checks

A proliferation of pot store owners are getting ready for legalization in B.C., but they will have to wait a while to see if they can get a provincial licence.

The attorney general’s ministry posted details Thursday of its requirements for cannabis retail licences, to be issued to qualifying stores in preparation for the federal legalization of recreational marijuana sales in October.

B.C.’s Liquor Control and Licensing Branch has been renamed the Liquor and Cannabis Regulation Branch in preparation for the new era, where Canada becomes the first industrialized country to make the product legal for adult use.

Production and medical use of marijuana remain a federal responsibility. B.C. and other provinces are in charge of wholesale and retail sales, potentially including sales of home-grown marijuana if production is federally approved.

Actual licence applications and fee amounts are not yet available, but prospective store owners are urged to study the details to see if they are ready to roll or one toke over the line. A few highlights:

• Operating an illegal cannabis store before October doesn’t disqualify you from getting a provincial licence, but you must pass a background and criminal record check first.

• Local approval is required for the province to consider a licence. Municipalities set rules on the number and location of stores and proximity to schools, and may decide they want only B.C. government cannabis stores or none at all.

• Online sales will be allowed only for B.C. government stores. Medical cannabis will continue to be sold online only, by federally licensed producers.

• Licensed stores may sell federally approved accessories, including rolling papers, pipes and vapourizers.

• Unlike liquor stores, no one under the age of 19 may enter a licensed recreational marijuana store in B.C.

• Consumption lounges will not be permitted in B.C., although they may be considered in the future. Also, no edibles until they are federally approved and no sampling or consumption in stores.

Just Posted

It’s the last day to vote in B.C.’s referendum on electoral reform

Ballots must now be dropped off in person to meet the deadline of 4:30 p.m.

North Coast First Nation chief says one major oil spill could ruin economy forever

Chief Marilyn Slett of Heiltsuk Nation near Bella Bella is leading a delegation in Ottawa this week

How to decide what to vote for in B.C.’s referendum on electoral reform

Ballots are due at Elections BC on Friday, Dec. 7, at 4:30 p.m.

Northern Health investigates racist posts of possible employee

Facebook comments call for segregated health authorities

Lawyer for Chinese exec detained by Canada says it’s ‘inconceivable’ she would flee

Meng Wanzhou was detained at the request of the U.S. during a layover at the Vancouver airport

Federal government plans examination of coerced sterilization

The Liberals have been pressed for a rapid response to recent reports on the sterilizations

Huitema, Cornelius named 2018 Canadian Youth International Players of the Year

Huitema was captain of Canada’s fourth-place team at this year’s FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup

Canada not slowing emissions from oil and gas: environmental groups

New report released at the United Nations climate talks in Poland

Liberal Party moves Trudeau fundraiser from military base

The fundraiser is scheduled for Dec. 19, with tickets costing up to $400

Pipeline protesters arrested at B.C. university

Three protesters were arrested after TRU property allegedly vandalized with red paint

Goodale to ‘examine’ transfer of Rafferty to medium-security prison

Michael Rafferty was sentenced to life in prison in 2012 in the kidnapping, sexual assault and first-degree murder of Tori Stafford

‘Abhorrent’ condition of autistic B.C. boy shows flaws in care system: report

‘Charlie’ was underweight and ‘covered in feces’ when he was removed from his mom’s care

Minister appoints former CIRB chair to resolve Canada Post labour dispute

Postal workers engaged in weeks of rotating walkouts

Most Read