City staff tell Edmonton councillors to hold off on cannabis lounge bylaw

The idea of cannabis lounges in Edmonton got an airing out by city councillors on the community services committee on Wednesday. But any hope the industry would get a foot in the door in Edmonton didn’t pan out.

Councillors heard that city staff are reluctant to create a new bylaw because “the government of Alberta and Alberta Gaming, Liquor and Cannabis Commission have not yet developed regulations for cannabis lounges or cafes,” said the report they were reviewing.

“Any bylaw changes would be done blindly,” said David Aitkin, the city’s branch manager for community standards.

He said city staff have reviewed what has gone on elsewhere in terms of rules and licensing.

“We certainly learned a lot relative to cannabis lounges, cafes, separation distances, setback distances, age limitations.

“I think we have the framework for application when and if it came through. However I do think that beginning those discussions now, without any idea of federal or provincial changes, would create some expectations, especially when the timeline may be pushed out several years.”

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