The federal government has introduced legislation to legalize cannabis by July 2018. There will be new federal, provincial and municipal processes for cannabis production, sale and consumption.
The legalization of cannabis will have many impacts. Over the coming months, Brazeau County will be reviewing federal and provincial direction and legislation as it becomes available, to help manage the legalization of cannabis in the best interest of our community.
What is Cannabis?
Cannabis refers to products made from the leaves and flowers of the cannabis plant. You may have also heard it called marijuana or pot. It can be consumed by smoking, vaporizing, eating in food, drinking, dabbing, putting drops under the tongue, or applying it directly to the skin in a lotion.
What does Legalization mean?
Cannabis is currently legal for medical purposes. This means that people with a prescription can purchase cannabis from licensed medical cannabis producers. Cannabis legalization refers to making cannabis legal for non-medical purposes. The Government of Canada has initiated the legalization of cannabis and Brazeau County will be required to amend its Land Use Bylaw and possibly introduce new bylaws to help prepare our community for change.
While the legalization of cannabis is a federal decision, provinces and municipalities each have areas of responsibility.
Federal Government Decisions
Consuming cannabis for non-medical purposes will be legalized in July 2018. The minimum age that people can buy, possess and consume cannabis will be 18 (provinces can increase the age limit). The federal government will set rules for:
- The types of cannabis products sold
- How cannabis products can be packaged and labelled
- The serving sizes and strength of cannabis products
- Safe practices for producing cannabis
- Tracking cannabis from seed to sale
For more information on federal legislation click here.
Province of Alberta Decisions
The minimum age will be 18 in Alberta. Smoking will be restricted in areas where children and youth gather. Cannabis will be sold in private retail stores and through a provincially managed online system. Stores will have to sell provincially licensed cannabis, and cannot sell cannabis with alcohol, tobacco or pharmaceuticals. The provincial government will set rules for:
- The minimum separation distances between cannabis stores and places where children and youth gather
- Tracking the distribution of cannabis from licensed producers to cannabis retail stores
For more information of provincial legislation click here.
Brazeau County Decisions
Just as the provincial government can further restrict federal regulations surrounding cannabis, municipalities will be able to set further restrictions on:
- Where cannabis stores can be located
- Regulations surrounding cannabis stores
- Cannabis store operating hours
- Business licensing requirements
- Where cannabis production and distribution (warehouse) facilities can be located
- Regulations surrounding cannabis production and distribution facilities
- Where cannabis can be consumed in public
Survey – Have your say!
Brazeau County is looking for feedback to help inform changes and updates to affected bylaws, and input on developing new bylaws or policies to respond to the legalization of recreational cannabis. Fill out our short survey here.
This page will be updated as more information becomes available.