March 6th, 2019 ~ Vol. 89 No. 10
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Council talks Cannabis
Crowsnest Pass Herald Front Page
Archive photo
Crowsnest Pass Municipal Council from left tor right: Councillors Marlene Anctil, Dave Filipuzzi, Doreen Glavin, Mayor Blair Painter, Councillors Lisa Sygutek, Gordon Lundy and Dean Ward.
David Selles
Pass Herald Reporter
Crowsnest council is getting closer to having a new bylaw in place regarding cannabis consumption.

At a council meeting on Tuesday February 25th, council spent time discussing the proposed by law.

The proposed Cannabis Consumption Bylaw 1022 would prohibit anyone from smoking or vaping cannabis of recreational purposes in any public place.

This essentially limits consumption to private homes and yards.

This bylaw won’t restrict residents from using other products of cannabis such as oils or edibles.

Medicinal use will also be allowed under this bylaw but people in need of it will be required to have a medical document proving their need for cannabis if a Peace Officer requests.

The largest discussion based around the bylaw regarded whether or not a business owner should be held responsible if an employee is caught smoking cannabis.

When the bylaw was presented to council, a section of it was worded that local business owners would also face a fine if one of their employee’s were smoking illegally.
continued below ...
Mayor Painter said that with the bylaw currently including that section, he simply couldn’t support it.

“I have a real concern with that. If that comes out of this document I will support it. But with that being in this document I cannot support this.”

Mayor Painter added that having this in the bylaw isn’t fair to business owners who simply can’t be fully aware of what their employees are doing at every moment.

Not all of council agreed on this topic.

Councillor Glavin showed concerns about what may happen if this section is removed from the bylaw.

Her main worry is that some locations in the Crowsnest Pass may end up as smoking areas if the owners aren’t held responsible for their employees actions.

"What about a business owner that rents out to five or six different people and continues to allow it to happen and they are getting fined left and right. How do you prevent that kind of situation from happening? It becomes like a drug use zone."
continued below ...
After further discussion, the majority of council approved a motion to remove the section of the bylaw that regarded disciplining other members of a business if one employee were to be caught.

Council then carried motions for first and second readings of the bylaw and Councillor Sygutek made a motion for consideration for third reading.

In order for this motion to go through, all of council would need to vote in favour but the motion was defeated after Councillor Lundy voted against it.

Council then decided that the bylaw will come back to council and they will discuss it at the next council meeting.

After the discussion they will vote on it and then the public will have an opportunity for input after the fact.
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March 6th, 2019 ~ Vol. 89 No. 10
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