Pubdate: Wed, 20 Sep 2017
Source: Ottawa Citizen (CN ON)
Copyright: 2017 Postmedia Network Inc.
Author: Jacquie Miller
Page: A4


Three of Ottawa's illegal pot shops have been sent notices from the
city warning that they are violating zoning bylaws.

It's the latest attempt by authorities to clamp down on the growing
number of illegal marijuana dispensaries in town as the clock ticks
down to July 1, when the federal government has promised that
recreational marijuana will be legal.

There are at least 19 dispensaries in Ottawa.

The city has said it has no authority to regulate the shops, since
there are no bylaws governing illegal businesses.

However, the dispensaries have been deemed to be retail businesses,
which aren't allowed in areas zoned industrial. The three shops given
notices of zoning violations are all in industrial areas: Ottawa
Cannabis Dispensary on Laperriere Avenue, The OMD on Antares Drive,
and Greenworks Medicinal on Canotek Road.

The proprietor of Greenworks said he had not received the zoning
notice, while a manager at OMD declined to comment.

It's the second zoning violation notice for Ottawa Cannabis
Dispensary. After the first, the shop was taken to court by the city
last summer, but charges were dropped because of an error in wording.

The notices are warnings. Investigations are ongoing, and may result
in "escalated enforcement actions," the city said in a statement.

Ottawa police have conducted multiple raids on the shops in the last
year and charged workers with drug trafficking, but many
establishments simply reopen.
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