Melnychuk, Phil 1/1/1997 - 31/12/2018
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1 CN BC: Maple Ridge Doctor Wants Limits On Recreational MarijuanaWed, 19 Apr 2017
Source:Maple Ridge News (CN BC) Author:Melnychuk, Phil Area:British Columbia Lines:124 Added:04/22/2017

Limit potency and amount for ages 21-25

Maple Ridge psychiatrist Dr. Biju Mathew is joining others in his profession in calling for the federal government to make legal age for smoking marijuana 21.

"Marijuana shouldn't be used on kids below 25," Mathew said.

The Cannabis Act, introduced by the federal government last week, calls for the minimum age forusing recreational marijuana to be 18, although provinces have the option to raise that.

"They have [proposed to] legalized pot, and they've also come up with stricter regulations, but they have lowered the age to 18, which is very disturbing," Mathew, president of the B.C. Psychiatric Association, said of the federal government.

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2 CN BC: 'Consult Cities On Cannabis'Wed, 29 Mar 2017
Source:Maple Ridge News (CN BC) Author:Melnychuk, Phil Area:British Columbia Lines:145 Added:03/29/2017

'Other provinces could get a head start'

Reports the federal government is soon to release its laws on recreational pot has the NDP's Mike Farnworth awaiting the provincial response.

"So far, we've not seen any work on this by the provincial government," said Farnworth, who's seeking re-election in Port Coquitlam.

Last year, Farnworth, along with MLA Carole James, visited Washington, which legalized recreational marijuana in 2012, and Oregon, to learn about some of the issues.

"How are they going to do the licensing? What type of edibles can be sold? What's the tax level going to look like?"

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3 CN BC: 'My Son Was Disposable'Fri, 07 Oct 2016
Source:Maple Ridge News (CN BC) Author:Melnychuk, Phil Area:British Columbia Lines:85 Added:10/08/2016

The question Sherry Hebeler wanted answered Wednesday at the fentanyl forum in Maple Ridge was where was the help for her son when he needed it.

Her son Bradley Porter, 33, died in a hospital washroom in November 2015, after apparently taking crystal meth that had been laced with fentanyl. He had been admitted to hospital and was addicted to painkillers, but had gone missing.

"Nobody found him for two hours," Hebeler said, adding hospital security later found him.

And three times previously when her son overdosed, when he was released from hospital, she had called police and asked that he be picked up on outstanding warrants.

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4 CN BC: Region Looks At Safe Injection SitesWed, 20 Jul 2016
Source:Maple Ridge News (CN BC) Author:Melnychuk, Phil Area:British Columbia Lines:169 Added:07/22/2016

Maple Ridge will work with Fraser Health

Fraser Health will identify priority sites for supervised drug consumption as part of a broader strategy to contain a surge in illicit drug overdoses, and Maple Ridge could be one.

Fraser Health has to talk with the City of Maple Ridge first.

"This is not something we've really ever talked about as a community," said Mayor Nicole Read.

"It sounds like this is a decision that's been made by Fraser Health in response to an emerging situation that's a real crisis. Obviously, we're going to be working with Fraser Health however we can to deal with the situation in our own community. But what that looks like, I'm not sure yet."

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5 CN BC: City Going To Court To Close Pot ShopWed, 27 Apr 2016
Source:Maple Ridge News (CN BC) Author:Melnychuk, Phil Area:British Columbia Lines:58 Added:04/27/2016

Maple Ridge to Seek Injunction Like Abbotsford

Maple Ridge is following Abbotsford's lead and seeking a court injunction to shut down one of the three medicinal marijuana stores in the city.

Friday, Maple Ridge noted that a Supreme Court ruling found Weeds Glass and Gifts in Abbotsfordviolated a city bylaw by not securing a business licence before opening.

"Maple Ridge is pursuing an injunction in the B.C. Supreme Court to shut down a similar Weeds Glass and Gifts store operation in Maple Ridge," said a news release Thursday.

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6 CN BC: Maple Ridge Firefighters To Have Narcan KitsWed, 23 Mar 2016
Source:Maple Ridge News (CN BC) Author:Melnychuk, Phil Area:British Columbia Lines:75 Added:03/26/2016

By the end of next month, Maple Ridge firefighters will be rolling through town with a new tool to help save lives.

The fire department's training personnel have now received instruction from B.C. Emergency Health Services on how to the administer Narcan, or naloxone, so they can pass on their training to the rest of 56 full-time and 60 paid-on-call firefighters.

Narcan kits allow first responders, or even family and friends, to inject someone who's suffering a fentanyl or other opioid overdose.

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7 CN BC: Bar Owner Looking At Medical MarijuanaFri, 26 Feb 2016
Source:Maple Ridge News (CN BC) Author:Melnychuk, Phil Area:British Columbia Lines:132 Added:02/29/2016

Looking to get ahead of new federal laws

Chris Fairfax is looking into the future and sees one where marijuana gets equal if not greater billing than alcohol.

He's thinking about joining the ranks of stores that are selling medicinal, even recreational pot, providing he can do so legally.

Fairfax, who owns The Wolf Bar on Lougheed Highway, told Maple Ridge council Tuesday that he pays $1,200 a year each for his business and liquor licences, that medicinal marijuana stores have no licences.

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8 CN BC: City Wants Say On Medical GrowsFri, 01 May 2015
Source:Maple Ridge News (CN BC) Author:Melnychuk, Phil Area:British Columbia Lines:88 Added:05/01/2015

'Location of properties should be made public'

Cities and the people who live within them, should be able to have a say in where medical marijuana operations set up within their boundaries, says the mayor of Maple Ridge.

"It should be a formal requirement that Health Canada make the location of these potential sites known to the public and hold a public meeting and consider the comments of our citizens in determining if such a facility should be considered for licensing in our city," Nicole Read said in a release Friday.

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9 CN BC: Greenhouse Crop Concerns In WhonnockWed, 25 Feb 2015
Source:Maple Ridge News (CN BC) Author:Melnychuk, Phil Area:British Columbia Lines:162 Added:02/26/2015

Whonnock residents are worried about the size, smell and the traffic of a potential medicinal marijuana operation on 272nd Street, but the man behind the project says it will be a showcase of high-tech growing.

By summer, a 40,000-sq.-foot greenhouse will be complete on a 15-acre piece of property tucked into a low-lying area near Whonnock Creek.

Just what will be grown inside the glass is up to Health Canada.

"The end use, in terms of crop, has not been determined," said Daniel Sutton, president of the numbered company that's building the project.

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10 CN BC: Getting To The Needle PointFri, 21 Nov 2014
Source:Maple Ridge News (CN BC) Author:Melnychuk, Phil Area:British Columbia Lines:157 Added:11/21/2014

The number of clean needles handed out to drug users by Alouette Addictions has more than doubled this year, from 18,000 to 50,000.

That doesn't mean, though, that the number of drug users has jumped by that amount.

"What we're seeing is that people are becoming more aware of the service. People are becoming more aware of their health," and are exchanging the needles to keep themselves and the streets cleaner, said Annika Polegato, executive-director of Alouette Addictions Services.

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11 CN BC: Maple Ridge Gearing Up For Grow Op Clean UpWed, 23 Apr 2014
Source:Maple Ridge News (CN BC) Author:Melnychuk, Phil Area:British Columbia Lines:58 Added:04/24/2014

Maple Ridge is taking steps to ensure it can clean up illegal medical grow ops by writing a new bylaw and hiring two more staff.

The extra enforcement will cost taxpayers another $130,000 yearly, if council approves the Safe Premises Bylaw.

The extra money will be required to pay for a bylaw officer ($70,000 yearly,) $49,000 for a bylaw clerk and $10,000 for a vehicle.

The bylaw, introduced for discussion at a council meeting last week, would replace a bylaw from a decade ago, by clarifying definitions and increasing fees to ensure as many costs are recovered as possible.

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12 CN BC: Maple Ridge Mayor Signs Pot PetitionFri, 08 Nov 2013
Source:Maple Ridge News (CN BC) Author:Melnychuk, Phil Area:British Columbia Lines:104 Added:11/12/2013

Campaign Still Short of Goal With a Month Left

Maple Ridge Mayor Ernie Daykin has added his voice to the call for law reform by signing the SensibleBC petition, which calls for referendum on decriminalizing marijuana..

"There needs to be some conversation had," Daykin said Tuesday.

"I think what we've got isn't working. Hopefully what's proposed will help the situation. Maybe legalizing it and taxing the crap out of it, selling it in liquor stores, is the way to go."

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13 CN BC: Former Councillor Poses Solution To Marijuana QuestionWed, 28 Aug 2013
Source:Maple Ridge News (CN BC) Author:Melnychuk, Phil Area:British Columbia Lines:76 Added:08/28/2013

Former Maple Ridge councillor Craig Speirs is inviting politicians of all stripes to join the effort to finding a solution to the smouldering question of marijuana.

Speirs is leading Sensible BC's efforts in Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows in an attempt to collect signatures from 10 per cent of the eligible voters in the riding to force a B.C. referendum on legalizing the herb. The group has to do so within 90 days in order to force an HST-type referendum that could take in September 2014.

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14 CN BC: Ticketing For Pot Possession SensibleWed, 28 Aug 2013
Source:Maple Ridge News (CN BC) Author:Melnychuk, Phil Area:British Columbia Lines:127 Added:08/28/2013

Police Chief's Association Propose Alternative to Court Process

The two local mayors like the idea of police just handing out tickets for pot possession instead of saddling people with criminal charges.

"We need to free up the court system to get some of the serious stuff dealt with," said Maple Ridge Mayor Ernie Daykin.

If police find someone with marijuana but with no medical marijuana licence, police should be able to issue a ticket, he says.

But if the amount is a kilogram or more, then trafficking charges could be in order. "There has to be some way to simplify the system."

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15 CN BC: Land Commission Gives Nod To PotWed, 10 Jul 2013
Source:Maple Ridge News (CN BC) Author:Melnychuk, Phil Area:British Columbia Lines:100 Added:07/12/2013

Medical pot is coming, whether Maple Ridge likes it not.

So staff are suggesting the district make the best of it and set some rules for where marijuana can be grown in Maple Ridge.

A recent announcement by the Agricultural Land Commission clarifying that growing medical marijuana is a permitted use in the land reserve confirms that Maple Ridge couldn't stop the process even if it wanted to.

"It just makes sense. We can't prohibit it anyways," planner Diana Hall told council on Monday.

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16 CN BC: Medical Grow Op Rankles NeighboursWed, 24 Apr 2013
Source:Maple Ridge News (CN BC) Author:Melnychuk, Phil Area:British Columbia Lines:172 Added:04/26/2013

The smell of marijuana, say neighbours, is so bad that two businesses may relocate; it's so bad, employees often leave with headaches while their clothing stinks.

Maple Ridge council could be giving the boot to the operation in units 103, 104 and 105 at 11410 Kingston St. after approving a remediation order Monday.

The owner of the strata units, Arms Holdings Ltd., will have to either hire a consultant and fix the smell within 30 days, or the legal grow operation will be shut down.

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17 CN BC: Medical Pot Production Zone In The WorksWed, 06 Mar 2013
Source:Maple Ridge News (CN BC) Author:Melnychuk, Phil Area:British Columbia Lines:99 Added:03/09/2013

Staff have followed through with council's order to find a place for medical marijuana production in the farm fields of Maple Ridge.

A new bylaw proposes to allow commercial production of marijuana in agricultural zones only - providing there are ample buffers between the growing facilities and neighbours. A similar bylaw has been in place in neighbouring Pitt Meadows since 2010.

Buildings used for pot production must be 60 metres from the front and side lot lines and 30 metres from the rear property lines and any creeks, according to the proposed zone amending bylaw.

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18 CN BC: Moving On Medical Marijuana ZonesFri, 30 Nov 2012
Source:Maple Ridge News (CN BC) Author:Melnychuk, Phil Area:British Columbia Lines:69 Added:12/01/2012

Council has told staff to find a way to put medical-marijuana grow operations into agricultural areas of Maple Ridge.

"They're going to draft a bylaw where it can only be grown in an agricultural zone and get it out of the houses," said Mayor Ernie Daykin.

"You can write a bylaw, and then the $64,000 question is - what happens if it's challenged. Will it stand up?"

Politicians made the decision at their Tuesday meeting after a report on the topic. According to the report, Health Canada is developing new standards for medical marijuana operations in two years. Those standards will toughen requirements for product quality, safety, record keeping, and could result in the phasing out of smaller, individual growers.

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19 CN BC: Growth Area For Medical GrowsWed, 21 Nov 2012
Source:Maple Ridge News (CN BC) Author:Melnychuk, Phil Area:British Columbia Lines:105 Added:11/22/2012

Medical marijuana is here to stay and Maple Ridge can't do much about it, except to say it should go on farmland and not in residential neighourhoods.

A staff report says staff and a lawyer should write up such a bylaw, an idea that was sent to a future council meeting for full discussion.

District planner Diana Hall told council that Maple Ridge can't restrict medical marijuana production for personal use, but it can regulate the commercial production of medical marijuana by requiring that it go in specific zones, in this case, farmland.

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20 CN BC: MLA Wants Washrooms UnlockedWed, 23 May 2012
Source:Maple Ridge News (CN BC) Author:Melnychuk, Phil Area:British Columbia Lines:66 Added:05/25/2012

Go to bathroom before visiting the income assistance office on Lougheed Highway in downtown Maple Ridge because the public washrooms in that building are locked.

That bothers MLA Michael Sather.

"It's totally ridiculous. I can't believe it," Sather said last week.

"It's a human rights kind of issue."

Sather, MLA for Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows, said he's received a few complaints, though not as many as he'd expect, after the department closed the bathroom to the public about a year ago.

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