Pubdate: Wed, 24 Jan 2018
Source: Telegram, The (CN NF)
Copyright: 2018 The Telegram
Page: B4


It's just another example of how complicated things are going to be as
provinces roll out their marijuana rules. Several provinces -
Newfoundland and Labrador among them - have decided that marijuana
smoking has to be done on private property. Ontario's rules are so
tight that weed smoking has to take place in private residences.

But what happens if your private residence is an apartment?

Here's part of a Canadian Press story out of Toronto:

"(The province is) not going to allow marijuana to be smoked in public
areas, so where the heck are people going to smoke marijuana? Well
they're going to do it in their apartments," said John Dickie of the
Canadian Federation of Apartment Associations. "The problem is, just
like when they smoke tobacco, the smell goes to neighbouring
apartments. Buildings are not hermetically sealed."

It can cost $5,000-6,000 to get the smell of marijuana smoke out of
apartment walls and floors, said Dan Henderson, president of the
Delsuites property management firm in Toronto.

"It's not the stigma (of marijuana use), it's just the number of
expenses to maintain the unit and the complaints landlords receive
from the neighbours," said Henderson, whose company manages rental
units for approximately 2,000 landlords in the Greater Toronto Area.

You can see the problem.

The landlords point out that in the past, they haven't had to write
marijuana smoking bans into their leases, since smoking it was already

The government, they say, is changing the rules in mid-stream, and
landlords aren't going to have the opportunity to reopen leases in
cases where they didn't anticipate needing to protect other residents
from second-hand weed.

The landlords have asked the Ontario government to allow them to
redraft leases to add in bans for marijuana smoking in individual
units in their buildings - but if they do, that creates a different

Will there end up being two different classes of citizens, homeowners
who can smoke marijuana, and renters who can't? How are you legalizing
marijuana if you then regulate it so tightly that smoking it can't
happen anyway?

It is, of course, one of the problems of bringing a whole new legal
pastime to the table.

Tobacco smoking already has its rules and regulations, including
stipulations in leases. If you want to smoke cigarettes in your
apartment, you have to find a landlord who will let you.

Tobacco and anti-smoking legislation has grown up over a period of
time: first, age limits, then on-package warnings and advertising
bans, then bans on indoor smoking at public locations, etc.

With marijuana, a whole bunch of different concerns are going to be
dealt with all at once - and it's not surprising that some of them
haven't been anticipated.

It's going to be a bit of a rocky road ahead.
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MAP posted-by: Matt