Pubdate: Wed, 10 Aug 2016
Source: Sooke News Mirror (CN BC)
Copyright: 2016 Sooke News Mirror
Author: Kevin Laird


Kate Karassev Began an Online Poll Last Week, and Will Present It to Council

A Sooke mom is afraid of a mass arrival of medical marijuana 
dispensaries in town and wants tougher action by district officials.

Kate Karassev began an online poll Thursday urging city council to 
regulate the medical marijuana industry in Sooke. The poll can be found here.

Sooke currently has three dispensaries. The first one opened its 
doors in April.

The City of Victoria is moving forward to regulate medical marijuana 
dispensaries that have popped up on city streets, in an attempt to 
control the booming sector.

There are 38 known medical marijuana businesses operating in Victoria 
that sell marijuana paraphernalia, provide medical advice and 
manufacture products containing marijuana, only eight of which have 
business licences that allow for the sale of such products.

"I am afraid that those businesses will be tempted to open in Sooke 
because there will be no similar bylaws," Karassev said.

"I haven't heard one person who said that it is great thing to have 
dispensaries in Sooke. I would like everyone who has concerns to be 
heard by our mayor and council."

The District of Sooke business license bylaw does not prohibit 
medicinal marijuana retail outlets.

Mayor Maja Tait said she hasn't heard any negative comments of the 
local dispensaries, most comments have been neutral. The RCMP haven't 
seen problems with the local establishments, even though they 
continue to monitor them closely.

"I'm not seeing it as a problem," Tait said. "I think it's something 
I need to hear from residents. If they are experiencing problems, I 
need to hear from them."

Tait doesn't think Sooke will see the same dilemma as Victoria 
because there is a lack of retail space here for a dispensary to set up shop.

Karassev hopes to get 100 signatures on her online poll and expects 
to present it to council this fall.
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MAP posted-by: Jay Bergstrom