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1 CN AB: Editorial: A Pot Revolution Comes To CanadaSat, 22 Apr 2017
Source:Medicine Hat News (CN AB)          Area:Alberta Lines:92 Added:04/22/2017

The right prices and levels of taxation must be set. If they're too low, people might be tempted to overindulge. If they're too high, criminals will provide cheaper alternatives.

In case you missed it, the federal government has just sown the seeds for a full-blown social revolution in Canada.

Last Thursday, just before the Easter long weekend started, the Liberals tabled legislation that will legalize and regulate the production, sale and use of recreational marijuana in this country starting in the summer of 2018.

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2CN AB: Usual Crowd Expected At 4/20 Marijuana EventThu, 20 Apr 2017
Source:Edmonton Journal (CN AB) Author:Wakefield, Jonny Area:Alberta Lines:Excerpt Added:04/22/2017

Edmonton's police chief says he doesn't expect a larger than usual 4/20 gathering Thursday as the city prepares for legal marijuana.

"I imagine we'll get a few people there, but nothing that's really on the radar we're concerned about," Chief Rod Knecht said Wednesday.

The annual smoke-up at the Alberta legislature could be one of the last under existing marijuana laws, as the Trudeau government prepares to legalize the drug.

The Liberals introduced bills this month to legalize and regulate marijuana by July 2018.

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3CN AB: Editorial: Work Must Exclude PotThu, 20 Apr 2017
Source:Calgary Herald (CN AB)          Area:Alberta Lines:Excerpt Added:04/22/2017

Adding to the many concerns and ambiguities clouding the Trudeau government's rush to legalize recreational marijuana use in Canada, the energy sector has exposed a significant void in the proposed rollout.

Enform, the oilpatch safety organization, is justifiably concerned that proposed federal laws tabled in the House of Commons last week do not include regulations on workplace safety.

It's urging Ottawa and provincial leaders - though the federal cannabis task force - to harmonize labour rules to ban marijuana use in workplaces where safety could be compromised. In Alberta, that would include most oil and gas operations.

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4 CN AB: Local Leaders Skeptical About Marijuana LegalizationWed, 19 Apr 2017
Source:St. Albert Gazette (CN AB) Author:Henderson, Jennifer Area:Alberta Lines:114 Added:04/22/2017

Last week the Liberal government tabled its long awaited legislation to legalize marijuana but provinces and municipalities are already concerned with the costs and responsibilities associated with it.

St. Albert MP Michael Cooper and Mayor Nolan Crouse are both concerned that the federal government is downloading the responsibilities to the provinces and municipalities without providing any financial support.

The bills tabled on Thursday outline the federal government's guidelines for legalization, which they plan to achieve by July 1, 2018.

The government plans to legalize the possession of 30 grams of dried cannabis for Canadian adults over the age of 18. Provinces have the option to raise the age if they see fit. Canadians will be able to buy the cannabis through the mail or at provincially regulated retail spaces.

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5 CN AB: Creating Community One Puff At A TimeThu, 20 Apr 2017
Source:Vue Weekly (CN AB) Author:Boissonneault, Stephan Area:Alberta Lines:87 Added:04/22/2017

Cannabis Clubs of Canada to be community focused hub for marijuana users

Since the Liberal's announcement of marijuana legislation, the media has been in an absolute frenzy, attempting to answer the question of what regulation in Canada will look like. In this pot-centric media storm no one has really approached the question of how recreational use will happen in a community setting.

Enter the Cannabis Clubs of Canada. Much like Spain's underground cannabis club scene, these collective hubs will allow people to consume marijuana on club property without worry.

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6 CN AB: Alberta Sees Costs, No Cash Cow From Federal CannabisWed, 19 Apr 2017
Source:Banff Crag & Canyon, The (CN AB) Author:Griwkowsky, Catherine Area:Alberta Lines:92 Added:04/22/2017

It's going to be challenging to get the province ready for the federal government's deadline of July 1, 2018, for legalized marijuana in the country, says Premier Rachel Notley.

Bills tabled Thursday in the House of Commons in Ottawa kickstart a national move toward legalization of recreational pot for people 18 and older.

A lot of decisions in the "very ambitious project" will be left to provinces to figure out before the law takes effect, Notley told reporters Thursday at the Alberta legislature.

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7 CN AB: The War On Deadly OpioidsWed, 19 Apr 2017
Source:St. Albert Gazette (CN AB) Author:Henderson, Jennifer Area:Alberta Lines:135 Added:04/22/2017

How drug units deal with fentanyl

The death toll for fentanyl continues to rise in 2017, with nearly double the number of deaths being reported in the first six weeks of the year.

According to Health Canada, from Jan. 1 to Feb, 11, 51 people died from overdosing on fentanyl. In 2016 during the same six weeks, 28 Albertans died as a result of a fentanyl overdose.

The drug was first found in St. Albert in 2014 and since then the St. Albert RCMP's drug unit said that currently there is at least one pill found in around 80 per cent of their overall drug cases.

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8 CN AB: Concerns Sparked Over Federal Cannabis LegislationThu, 20 Apr 2017
Source:Airdrie City View (CN AB) Author:Waldner, Christina Area:Alberta Lines:96 Added:04/22/2017

he federal government outlined its plans for the legalization of cannabis April 13, which includes regulations for the production, distribution, sale and possession of the drug while introducing strict penalties for its misuse.

"Today, we are following through on our commitment to introduce comprehensive legislation to legalize, strictly regulate and restrict access to cannabis and to create new laws to punish more severely those who drive under its influence," Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada Jody Wilson-Raybould said in a release issued by the government.

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9 CN AB: Pot Law Draws Mixed ReactionThu, 20 Apr 2017
Source:Cochrane Eagle (CN AB) Author:Seewalt, Lindsay Area:Alberta Lines:110 Added:04/22/2017

Last week the federal government announced it will move forward with its highly-anticipated and contentious pledge to legalize recreational marijuana.

What might possibly be the most memorable piece of legislation undertaken by the Justin Trudeau Liberals will most certainly result in polarizing political and personal stances.

Social media and online reactions range from cheers to fears - including criticisms that the whole movement is nothing short of a government tax grab that has parent and landlord advocates up in arms.

"I've witnessed Justin Trudeau try to manage the economy, electoral reform … I'm not sure I have faith in his ability to protect kids from pot," said Banff-Airdrie Conservative MP Blake Richards.

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10 CN AB: Editorial: Ramifications Of Legal Marijuana Remain CloudyThu, 20 Apr 2017
Source:Medicine Hat News (CN AB) Author:Gallant, Collin Area:Alberta Lines:99 Added:04/22/2017

Today is April 20, or 4/20 for short, the day marijuana activists use for protest, public displays of defiance and a call to action to legalize pot.

The times are certainly about to change as Ottawa and the provinces consider the implications of the Liberal government's plan to make marijuana legal.

Concerns about decriminalizing pot, however, have many recreational smokers increasingly leery about receiving what they wished for.

Those are the people who should benefit most from the bill, which is posed as a measure to avoid criminal records and fines for possession of the drug that is extremely common, if one is being honest.

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11 CN AB: Column: Making The Illegal SaferTue, 18 Apr 2017
Source:Vulcan Advocate (CN AB) Author:Wilson, Morgan Area:Alberta Lines:103 Added:04/21/2017

There's very little middle ground in the debate about safe injection sites.

Lines are quickly drawn between the supporters and the opposition.

I suspect that you could do a bit of political polling during a discussion about "supervised consumption sites" and the lines dividing the participant camps would likely reveal a left-right political split as well.

Conservatives tend to be anti-drug, anti-safe injection types.

Liberals tend to flow to the other side, largely supporting supervised consumption sites.

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12CN AB: Oil And Gas Industry Wants Pot Ban In Dangerous JobsTue, 18 Apr 2017
Source:Calgary Herald (CN AB) Author:Southwick, Reid Area:Alberta Lines:Excerpt Added:04/21/2017

Worried that dope-smoking workers could cause a "catastrophic event" at an oil and gas operation, an oilpatch safety group will press the federal and provincial governments to ban marijuana in hazardous workplaces after the drug is legalized.

Enform, which is funded by oil and gas industry groups, had raised its proposed ban with the federal cannabis task force, but the Liberal government's legislation, released last week, is silent on workplace safety.

The group will lobby the provinces and Ottawa to harmonize labour rules to allow for a ban in so-called safety-sensitive workplaces, such as refineries, gas plants and mines, until drug testing for cannabis improves.

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13 CN AB: LTE: Hazy LawMon, 17 Apr 2017
Source:Edmonton Sun (CN AB) Author:Temoor, Sohail Area:Alberta Lines:30 Added:04/19/2017

While I do understand the reasoning behind legalizing marijuana, I believe that the public health risks outweigh the legislative benefits. It can cause impairment of both perception and motor skills.

These factors need to be functional to ensure safe driving. A likely outcome of legalizing marijuana is that it may lead to greater incidents of accidents - and possible deaths - due to intoxication. We are already working towards mitigating deaths due to alcohol, adding marijuana to the mix poses an additional liability to public safety.

Sohail Temoor



(People shouldn't drive drunk or stoned.)

[end]

14 CN AB: PUB LTE: Green DreamsSat, 15 Apr 2017
Source:Edmonton Sun (CN AB) Author:Fisker, Eric Area:Alberta Lines:35 Added:04/19/2017

I can't help but feeling Ms. Leitch's column is not about marijuana but about her getting votes (of older people?); at the same time she derides Trudeau for, in her opinion using it to get the younger vote.

Having been a teenager in the '70s I've been exposed to smoking dope and know people who do so daily (I am not one of them). I can't think of anyone who has messed up their life, family or career due to this habit. Quite the contrary for people who consume alcohol daily.

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15 CN AB: Column: Legit Weed's Price PointSun, 16 Apr 2017
Source:Edmonton Sun (CN AB) Author:Bonokoski, Mark Area:Alberta Lines:106 Added:04/19/2017

Buy low, sell high, and other dope on legalized pot

In the bull-bear world of stock-market traders, the smell of fear ultimately tightens sphincter muscles and triggers sell-offs.

Within minutes of Justin Trudeau's Liberals tabling their pot legislation, for example, the TSX began dumping some of its publicly traded marijuana stocks.

The lack of clarity in the Liberals' spanking-new Cannabis Act got speculative investors nervous, which led to a feeling of financial uncertainty, which led to an unloading of stock.

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16 CN AB: Feds Hit Mark On Marijuana Bill: ProducerSat, 15 Apr 2017
Source:Winnipeg Sun (CN MB) Author:Dawkins, Glen Area:Alberta Lines:74 Added:04/19/2017

Cam Battley recently did a presentation near Calgary where high school students talked about how easy it was to access cannabis in their school. But when he asked if anyone was selling illegal liquor, the answer was no.

"Managing a legal substance like alcohol with age restrictions and regulation has actually worked much better than having a prohibition system," said Battley, the Executive Vice President of Aurora Cannabis which is the second largest producer of medical cannabis in Canada. "That's what we're trying to do with cannabis."

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17CN AB: 'There Wasn't This Escalation In Crime'Fri, 14 Apr 2017
Source:Calgary Herald (CN AB) Author:Cole, Yolande Area:Alberta Lines:Excerpt Added:04/19/2017

Calgary's police chief is backing calls for a local site where drug users could consume substances under medical supervision. Roger Chaffin said preliminary discussions are underway about what a supervised consumption site in the city will look like. He added that police will work to ensure that community members feel safe.

Dr. Thomas Kerr is the co-director of the Addiction and Urban Health Research Initiative at the British Columbia Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS and the principal investigator of several large cohort studies involving people who inject drugs and people living with HIV/AIDS. He spoke to Postmedia about community concerns when supervised injection facility Insite was established in Vancouver's Downtown Eastside in 2003.

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18 CN AB: Column: Don't Forget About That Omnibus BillFri, 14 Apr 2017
Source:Edmonton Sun (CN AB) Author:Bonokoski, Mark Area:Alberta Lines:97 Added:04/15/2017

The Liberals' hot-boxing of a marijuana smokescreen

It was a brilliant if not cynical move on the part of the Trudeau Liberals to table their marijuana legislation during the same week they thumped down a 294-page omnibus budget document like those contemptible Harperites were so prone to doing.

After all, if a smokescreen was ever needed for a touchy topic, such as the Liberals' breaking a promise to never table the kind of all-encompassing omnibus bill that riled them up during the Conservatives' years, then what better way than to hot-box it in the progressive hipsterism of legalizing pot?

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19 CN AB: Column: Justin Trudeau Is Telling Our Young People That It'sFri, 14 Apr 2017
Source:Calgary Sun, The (CN AB) Author:Leitch, Kellie Area:Alberta Lines:85 Added:04/15/2017

This week, the Trudeau Liberals introduced The Cannabis Act, legislation that will legalize the recreational use of marijuana.

I am opposed to this legislation and I will vote against it, but the Liberals will use their majority to pass it.

So when I am elected prime minister in 2019, I will repeal this legislation.

Marijuana, like other pharmaceuticals, is a harmful drug and dangerous when not used under the supervision of a physician. As a physician, I know the impact this drug can have on the developing brains of children and young people. This is clear from the research, which shows that young people who use marijuana have lower high school graduation rates, which puts their future in jeopardy. Worse, the science shows that marijuana use in 18 to 25 year olds can result in brain deformities.

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20 CN AB: Pot Timeline 'Ambitious'Fri, 14 Apr 2017
Source:Edmonton Sun (CN AB) Author:Griwkowsky, Catherine Area:Alberta Lines:92 Added:04/15/2017

Notley wants consultations on marijuana policy

It's going to be challenging to get the province ready for the federal government's deadline of July 1, 2018, for legalized marijuana in the country, says Premier Rachel Notley.

Bills tabled Thursday in the House of Commons in Ottawa kickstart a national move toward legalization of recreational pot for people 18 and older.

A lot of decisions in the "very ambitious project"will be left to provinces to figure out before the law takes effect, Notley told reporters Thursday at the Alberta legislature.

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21 CN AB: Chamber Asks Feds To Delay Weed Laws Till Work SafetyTue, 11 Apr 2017
Source:Metro (Edmonton, CN AB) Author:Boyd, Alex Area:Alberta Lines:41 Added:04/13/2017

With the federal government set to legalize marijuana next summer, the Edmonton Chamber of Commerce is asking the government to hold off another year in order to address what they say are "substantial" workplace safety concerns.

In a release Monday President and CEO Janet Riopel said that while there are "significant economic opportunities" that will come with legal cannabis, there will be concerns for employers, too.

"Many businesses and industry groups have told us that marijuana use is completely incompatible with safety-sensitive workplaces," she said.

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22CN AB: Column: Liberals Should Announce An Amnesty For MarijuanaTue, 11 Apr 2017
Source:Calgary Herald (CN AB) Author:Breakenridge, Rob Area:Alberta Lines:Excerpt Added:04/13/2017

With legalization near and courts jammed, why are people still being charged?

In sharp contrast to last year, marijuana activist Dana Larsen's latest visit to Calgary ended up being uneventful, at least from a law enforcement perspective.

As part of Larsen's cross-country Overgrow Canada tour, he was handing out marijuana seeds to those in attendance at Friday's event. Police were briefly present, but left without incident.

It's certainly understandable why police would avoid making a fuss. For one thing, there are numerous places in Calgary where marijuana seeds can be obtained. If Calgary police are going to turn a blind eye to that, it wouldn't make sense to start arresting people at Larsen's event. Moreover, there's the additional hassle of having to prove that these are, in fact, viable marijuana seeds.

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23 CN AB: Column: The Minimum Age To Buy Pot Should Be 21, Not 18Sun, 09 Apr 2017
Source:Calgary Sun, The (CN AB) Author:Warren, Jim Area:Alberta Lines:111 Added:04/12/2017

The minimum age to buy and consume recreational marijuana should be set at 21 across Canada.

The new provincial rules on weed should also ban anyone 22 years of age and under from having any trace of marijuana in their body while operating a motor vehicle.

That ban should also apply to anyone with less than five years of driving experience.

These rules should be put in place to protect our children.

They are the most vulnerable to the potential perils of legal marijuana. A minimum age of 21 will help keep marijuana out of our high schools

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24CN AB: Column: City Team Needs Power To Be Proactive Ahead OfWed, 05 Apr 2017
Source:Calgary Herald (CN AB) Author:Lakritz, Naomi Area:Alberta Lines:Excerpt Added:04/08/2017

Federal legislation is being rushed along, laying the groundwork for a black market

Just what is the Trudeau government's reason for legalizing marijuana on Canada Day 2018? What does pot have to do with Confederation?

Maybe the link is a letter written by Lord Dufferin, governor general of Canada from 1872 to 1878, in which he describes his visit to Charlottetown at the time of Confederation.

"I found the Island in a high state of jubilation and quite under the impression that it is the Dominion that has been annexed to Prince Edward," Lord Dufferin wrote to Sir John A. Macdonald in 1873.

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25 CN AB: Activist Planting Seeds Of Civil Disobedience In Return ToThu, 06 Apr 2017
Source:Metro (Calgary, CN AB) Author:Fox, Autumn Area:Alberta Lines:36 Added:04/06/2017

In a bold move, pro-cannabis activist Dana Larsen is risking arrest again when his speaking tour returns to Calgary this Friday.

Larsen was arrested last year and charged with trafficking and possession with intent to traffic when he distributed free cannabis seeds as part of his Overgrow Canada campaign to give away five million seeds - it was the only city on the tour where police got involved.

Larsen said he bears no ill will towards CPS, but said he'll be more prepared this time.

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26 CN AB: Complications come with legal pot: Police ChiefSat, 01 Apr 2017
Source:Medicine Hat News (CN AB) Author:Slade, Gillian Area:Alberta Lines:78 Added:04/01/2017

Legalizing marijuana is not going to reduce policing costs, and in fact, the opposite is true, says Medicine Hat Police Service.

"There are a lot of details to be determined and it certainly is not going to save the police time and money and will probably cost more in the end because there will be regulations to be enforced," said police chief Andy McGrogan.

In the next 10 days the federal government will introduce legislation to legalize marijuana, which will come into effect about a year from now. Provinces will set an age restriction for buying marijuana and determine how it will be accessed at the retail level.

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27 CN AB: Police On High AlertThu, 30 Mar 2017
Source:Calgary Sun, The (CN AB) Author:Potkins, Meghan Area:Alberta Lines:70 Added:03/31/2017

More funding, data sought to help detect drug-impaired driving

The Calgary Police Service wants more information and more funding for drug impairment recognition training of front-line officers before pot becomes legal in Canada.

At a meeting of the Calgary police commission this week, CPS outlined the steps the service is taking following the announcement this week that the Liberal government will introduce legislation to legalize marijuana by July 1, 2018.

Sgt. Richard Butler, who heads the force's alcohol and drug recognition unit, warned the legalization of the drug in other jurisdictions has been accompanied by a rise in collision rates and costs associated with policing drug-impaired drivers.

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28CN AB: City Police Crafting Plan For Legal PotThu, 30 Mar 2017
Source:Calgary Herald (CN AB) Author:Potkins, Meghan Area:Alberta Lines:Excerpt Added:03/31/2017

The Calgary Police Service wants more information and more funding for drug impairment recognition training for front-line officers before marijuana becomes legal in Canada.

At a meeting of the Calgary police commission this week, CPS outlined the steps the service is taking following the announcement this week that the Liberal government will introduce legislation to legalize pot by July 1, 2018.

Sgt. Richard Butler, who heads the force's alcohol and drug recognition unit, warned that the legalization of the drug in other jurisdictions has been accompanied by a rise in collision rates and costs associated with policing drug-impaired drivers.

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29 CN AB: LTE: Legalizing Pot Simply A MistakeThu, 30 Mar 2017
Source:Calgary Herald (CN AB) Author:Hershfield, Noel Area:Alberta Lines:45 Added:03/31/2017

Re: "Liberal promise stirs up a pot of trouble," March 28.

It is incredible that Health Canada and the government have decided to legalize marijuana for recreational use.

Here is an update on this psychoactive drug. Dr. Raphael Mechoulam of Israel has been studying it for 55 years. He and his colleagues have written 400 papers and have 20 patents.

He stated recently that legalizing this powerful psychoactive drug is very dangerous. I guess our experts have not read his research.

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30 CN AB: MP Motz Says No To Legal PotTue, 28 Mar 2017
Source:Medicine Hat News (CN AB) Author:Kalinowski, Tim Area:Alberta Lines:72 Added:03/31/2017

Medicine Hat-Cardston-Warner MP Glen Motz opposes to the federal government's decision to legalize marijuana. The Liberal government made the announcement on Monday it would be going ahead with its legalization plan by July 1, 2018.

"I am personally opposed to the legalizing of marijuana, and how it is being presented," states Motz.

Drawing on his policing background, Motz says there is no proof legalization will do anything to get rid of illegal drug gangs or increase government revenues. According to Motz, the only direct impact will be on impaired driving rates.

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31 CN AB: Pot Purchase PossibilitiesTue, 28 Mar 2017
Source:Metro (Calgary, CN AB) Author:Pike, Helen Area:Alberta Lines:73 Added:03/31/2017

Calgary entrepreneur ready to grow weed business

A federal timeline for marijuana legalization means Alberta entrepreneurs are ready to grow their businesses.

Legalization legislation is coming to parliament in early April, and on Monday the federal government said they plan to have pot policies in place before Canada Day 2018.

The City of Calgary sent documents to the federal government with their legalization wish-list as the Taskforce for Marijuana Legalization and Regulation worked away on a report that was released late last year.

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32 CN AB: Editorial: Legalizing Marijuana Should Mean Less GovernmentTue, 28 Mar 2017
Source:Edmonton Sun (CN AB)          Area:Alberta Lines:65 Added:03/31/2017

Ontario is still suffering from a hundred year hangover after Canada ended its brief and failed experiment with alcohol prohibition. Let's hope the state doesn't get stoned as well.

There are a number of medical and legal reasons to consider following news the Liberal government intends to legalize marijuana by July 1, 2018. But there's also one major governmental one to keep in mind: bloated bureaucracy.

In the coming days the Ontario government will release its annual sunshine list - the tally of public sector workers bringing home over $100,000 annually.

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33 CN AB: Alberta Is Still Plotting Pot Policy: NotleyTue, 28 Mar 2017
Source:Calgary Sun, The (CN AB) Author:Logan, Shawn Area:Alberta Lines:55 Added:03/31/2017

Alberta still hashing out pot policy as feds aim for 2018 marijuana legalization

Alberta's NDP will await federal legislation and a public conversation before rolling out its own policies around legalized pot, Premier Rachel Notley said Monday.

With the feds reportedly set to announce legislation next month with the aim of making marijuana legal by next Canada Day, Notley said Alberta isn't rushing to put its own stamp on the policy before setting eyes on it, or before asking Albertans to weigh in.

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34 CN AB: Column: Buzz Off A Let's End The Pot Raids!Tue, 28 Mar 2017
Source:Edmonton Sun (CN AB) Author:Hanlon, Sarah Area:Alberta Lines:84 Added:03/31/2017

With a firm date on marijuana legalization, Toronto Police Services and councillors need to wake up and smell the reefer.

The federal government will introduce legislation on April 10 that will legalize cannabis by July 1, 2018. According to the CBC, this past weekend, Bill Blair, head of the Legalization Task Force, outlined a plan for the Liberal caucus which basically says that the federal government will set health and safety standards but the provinces will get to decide where and how it will be sold. (Other developments: Ottawa will likely set a minimum age of 18 to buy marijuana but provinces can adjust that as well and the government will limit four plants per household to those who wish to grow their own herb.)

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35CN AB: OPED: Spend Alberta's Pot Revenue On Mental HealthWed, 29 Mar 2017
Source:Edmonton Journal (CN AB) Author:Andrews, Edrick Area:Alberta Lines:Excerpt Added:03/29/2017

The system is underfunded, argues Edrick Andrews.

It's been over a year since MLA Dr. David Swann submitted his report - Valuing Mental Health - to Health Minister Sarah Hoffman, with 32 recommendations for her consideration. While the government has delivered on some of these recommendations, the mental health system remains in serious crisis.

So what is the problem? Acute underfunding. A scary situation since one in five Albertans will suffer from mental illness in their lifetime, and one in 10 individuals over the age of 15 will grapple with drug or alcohol addiction.

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36 CN AB: Pot Regs ComingWed, 22 Mar 2017
Source:Edmonton Sun (CN AB) Author:Kent, Gordon Area:Alberta Lines:64 Added:03/24/2017

Sales rules in place next year: justice minister

Alberta should have regulations in place to allow recreational marijuana sales next year, Justice Minister Kathleen Ganley said Tuesday.

The federal government has vowed to introduce legislation this spring to legalize pot, but Ganley said packaging, distribution, zoning, building codes and other details must be worked out before people can smoke and eat cannabis in the province without breaking the law.

"I'm not sure whether that has yet penetrated the public's consciousness fully. There's an enormous amount of work that has to be done," she said following a speech to the Alberta Association of Municipal Districts and Counties convention in the Shaw Conference Centre.

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37CN AB: Put Pot Revenues Into Mental Health, Advocates UrgeFri, 24 Mar 2017
Source:Edmonton Journal (CN AB) Author:Graney, Juris Area:Alberta Lines:Excerpt Added:03/24/2017

Group wants taxes Alberta collects from cannabis sales used to bolster services

The province should reinvest all tax revenue from the sale of legal cannabis in Alberta into addiction and mental health services, an advocacy group says.

Sateen Werner, a graduate student at the University of Alberta and member of Student Advocates for Public Health, told a forum Wednesday the legalization of cannabis and the new revenue stream has the potential to address the "concerning gaps" in the province's "underfunded and under-resourced" addictions and mental health services in Alberta.

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38CN AB: Province Targets Next Year For Sales Of Recreational PotWed, 22 Mar 2017
Source:Calgary Herald (CN AB) Author:Kent, Gordon Area:Alberta Lines:Excerpt Added:03/22/2017

Justice minister says devil in the details as NDP works to put regulations in place

Alberta should have regulations in place to allow recreational marijuana sales next year, Justice Minister Kathleen Ganley said Tuesday.

The federal government has vowed to introduce legislation this spring to legalize pot, but Ganley said packaging, distribution, zoning, building codes and other details must be worked out before people can smoke and eat cannabis in the province without breaking the law.

"I'm not sure whether that has yet penetrated the public's consciousness fully. There's an enormous amount of work that has to be done," she said following a speech to the Alberta Association of Municipal Districts and Counties convention in the Shaw Conference Centre.

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39 CN AB: City Staff Have Pot On The BrainWed, 15 Mar 2017
Source:Metro (Edmonton, CN AB) Author:Simes, Jeremy Area:Alberta Lines:60 Added:03/17/2017

Officials mull ground rules for looming legalization

City staff are laying the ground rules for possible legal pot shops in Edmonton.

Councillors discussed a city report Tuesday that provides an initial look on what legal pot could look like as the city waits for the federal government to release more details on plans to legalize the sale of cannabis for recreational use.

In the report, the city proposes adding "cannabis retail sales" and "cannabis lounges" to a bylaw that currently regulates development of bars and retail stores.

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40CN AB: Council Works To Tighten Up Zoning Rules For Pot ShopsWed, 15 Mar 2017
Source:Edmonton Journal (CN AB) Author:Stolte, Elise Area:Alberta Lines:Excerpt Added:03/17/2017

Edmonton moved to close loopholes in the zoning bylaw Tuesday to ensure marijuanasales can't happen in corner stores and residential neighbourhoods.

The zoning changes will also specifically ban toking in pubs, a move city planners called "preventative maintenance" to prepare Edmonton for the coming legalization of recreational marijuana use.

"So operations aren't able to legitimize blended uses," said senior planner Colton Kirsop at council's executive committee.

Kirsop recommended other zoning changes and smoking bans be delayed until the federal rules are clear so council debate doesn't "get lost in the weeds." Ottawa is expected in June to introduce legislation regarding recreational marijuana, with legalization to follow in 2019. Based on task force recommendations, it appears it will also legalize cannabis lounges, but ban drinking and smoking there, say city staff.

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41 CN AB: Sowing The Seeds Of Pot LegalizationTue, 14 Mar 2017
Source:Lethbridge Herald (CN AB) Author:Martin, Tijana Area:Alberta Lines:105 Added:03/17/2017

Cannabis Crusader stops in Lethbridge

This spring, cannabis plants may start appearing in places you'd least expect. And it might be because of Dana Larsen's Overgrow Canada campaign.

On Monday night, the cannabis expert, activist and author spoke in Lethbridge for the first time as part of his Overgrow Canada Tour. The event took place at Moose Hall and attendees were given 100 free cannabis seeds to plant.

"Lethbridge has been somewhat excluded from these types of events in the past, just being a smaller city kind of off the beaten track, and I feel it's important to get this tour here to Lethbridge, to get the exposure to see that (marijuana) is here in Lethbridge as much as it is everywhere else in Canada, and the city needs to embrace that," said local event host Austin Moloughney.

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42CN AB: Police See Surge In Cancer-Causing Narcotic AdditiveMon, 13 Mar 2017
Source:Edmonton Journal (CN AB) Author:ClaireTheobald, Area:Alberta Lines:Excerpt Added:03/17/2017

Painkiller mixed with cocaine by dealers can cause seizures, coma or death

Police fear a growing amount of buffing agent being seized in drug busts means more high-level dealers are bringing wholesale quantities into Edmonton for redistribution, creating another avenue for profit.

The Edmonton Drug and Gang Enforcement (EDGE) unit seized more buffing agent in 2016 - 82.05 kg - than all cocaine, marijuana, heroin and methamphetamine combined.

Buffing agents are used by drug dealers to dilute illicit drugs to increase profits.

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43CN AB: Hempfest Participants Balk User StereotypesMon, 13 Mar 2017
Source:Edmonton Journal (CN AB) Author:LePage, Michelle Area:Alberta Lines:Excerpt Added:03/17/2017

Recreational marijuana users are lazy.

That's the stereotype entrepreneur John Carlson wanted to break while manning a booth for his business at the HempFest Cannabis Expo at the Shaw Conference Centre this past weekend.

The 26-year-old is the owner of Boxcar Studios in Olds, Alta., a glassblowing studio and shop that specializes in "420/710 accessories."

Carlson, a self-taught glassblower, said he wanted to show people marijuana users can be professional and organized.

"If you look here, there's a room full of young, hardworking entrepreneurs."

[continues 304 words]

44 CN AB: Blood Tribe Battles Drug WoesSun, 12 Mar 2017
Source:Edmonton Sun (CN AB) Author:Potkins, Meghan Area:Alberta Lines:192 Added:03/17/2017

Suboxone offers hope for fentanyl addicts as reserve marks period of progress

Nearly every day, Darcy Medicine Crane catches a ride in a medical transport truck to a pharmacy in Stand Off, a community on the Blood reserve in southern Alberta, to take his daily dose of Suboxone.

He's earned enough trust to be given "carries" - a small amount of the drug that he can administer himself at home - but said he prefers to make the 20-minute drive to the pharmacy each day.

[continues 1330 words]

45 CN AB: Preparing For Legal Pot ShopsFri, 10 Mar 2017
Source:Metro (Edmonton, CN AB) Author:Simes, Jeremy Area:Alberta Lines:97 Added:03/11/2017

City report addresses marijuana dispensaries

The city is getting a head start on preparing for the expected growth of legal pot shops in Edmonton, but at least one business owner eyeing a future store wants more answers.

Edmonton addressed marijuana dispensaries for the first time in a report released Thursday, as it waits for the federal government to release more details on its expected bill to legalize sales of cannabis for recreational use.

The report is the first look into what legal pot in Edmonton could look like: it outlines where marijuana can be grown, and adds 'cannabis retail sales' and 'cannabis lounges' to a bylaw that governs the development of bars and other retail stores.

[continues 430 words]

46CN AB: Column: If Scourge Of Opioid Deaths Isn't An Emergency, ThenTue, 07 Mar 2017
Source:Calgary Herald (CN AB) Author:Braid, Don Area:Alberta Lines:Excerpt Added:03/09/2017

Some columns are hard to write because it's almost impossible to stop watching the events that propel them.

That's the way it was with Monday's emergency legislature debate on opioid addiction and deaths.

It was fascinating, emotional, moving and very informative. It might have surprised many Albertans who think politicians have no clue about real life.

MLAs on all sides - Wildrose, PC, Alberta Party, Liberal and NDP - have seen the carnage close up.

Progressive Conservative MLA Rick Fraser, a former EMS worker, recalled arriving at a residence to find a 14-year-old boy who'd seemed perfectly normal when he arrived home, only to die shortly afterward in the basement.

[continues 598 words]

47 CN AB: Column: Drug Dealers Getting Away With MurderSun, 05 Mar 2017
Source:Edmonton Sun (CN AB) Author:Bonokoski, Mark Area:Alberta Lines:95 Added:03/08/2017

While it seems out of context for a career progressive, Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson has gone law-and-order rogue in his quest to stem the plague of fentanyl overdoses and deaths in the nation's capital.

He wants manslaughter charges laid against drug dealers if the illicit narcotics they peddle end up causing death.

And he is not wrong in wanting this.

The time is now to stop whistling past the graveyard, and ignoring the fact there is a fentanyl crisis that is not going away anytime soon - aided by the fact the lethal drug, 50 to 100 times more powerful than heroin, is being laced into counterfeit pain killers disguised as known prescription narcotics of specific strengths.

[continues 510 words]

48 CN AB: Column: Stiffer Sentences For Drug DealersFri, 03 Mar 2017
Source:Medicine Hat News (CN AB) Author:Slade, Gillian Area:Alberta Lines:72 Added:03/06/2017

An initiative to address the proliferation of illicit opioids was announced by Crime Stoppers in Ontario this week. They promised a cash reward for information leading to a seizure of drugs and/or the arrest of a trafficker.

Other parts of Ontario have also tried this. Some declared the program a "success" having paid two rewards for about 12 tips.

We have not seen a reduction in the number of opioid overdoses. In fact the opposite is true.

Tips leading to the conviction of a drug trafficker or two is good but will likely not put them out of business. Others will fill their place. It is time for stiffer sentences that really will be a deterrent.

[continues 382 words]

49CN AB: Expert Calls Treatment Of Opioid Addicts OutdatedWed, 01 Mar 2017
Source:Calgary Herald (CN AB) Author:Kaufmann, Bill Area:Alberta Lines:Excerpt Added:03/06/2017

Canada's use of methadone to treat fentanyl and other opioid abuse is dangerous and outdated, says a substance-abuse expert gathered with others in Banff mapping out addiction strategies.

Canada should follow other countries, including the U.S., that have moved toward using another drug, buprenorphine/naloxone to manage opioid addiction, said Dr. Cam Wild of the School of Public Health at the University of Alberta.

"Canada has fallen behind other countries in treatment - in many places, Suboxone is the first line of care," said Wild, using buprenorphine/naloxone's brand name.

[continues 280 words]

50 CN AB: LTE: Addicts Can't Shirk ResponsibilityMon, 27 Feb 2017
Source:Calgary Herald (CN AB) Author:Szecsy, Peter Area:Alberta Lines:26 Added:03/04/2017

Re: "Officers carrying naloxone kits can save lives, RCMP says," Feb. 11.

Our police and EMS are turning themselves inside out trying to save people hell-bent on killing themselves. What responsibilities do these drug users assume in any of this? They know the risks, but also realize that there is a safety net that our police and medical professionals offer that will save their lives if something should go wrong. So how much do we fine these people for breaking the law, using our valuable EMS and medical resources and saving their lives?

Peter Szecsy, Calgary

[end]


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