HTTP/1.0 200 OK Content-Type: text/html Toronto Endorses Province's Pot Plan
Pubdate: Thu, 05 Oct 2017
Source: Toronto Star (CN ON)
Copyright: 2017 The Toronto Star
Author: David Rider
Page: GT2


Toronto city council has, by a narrow margin, endorsed Premier
Kathleen Wynne's plan for tightly regulated marijuana sales through
LCBO-style stores.

Council voted 21-16 Wednesday in favour of backing Wynne's pot plan,
while demanding that the city be compensated for any related costs
when the federal government legalizes marijuana next year.

Councillor Cesar Palacio, chair of the licensing committee, said the
city must endorse the closure of all illegal, private dispensaries to
prevent "chaos" in the new marijuana marketplace.

Many councillors, however, said the provincial approach freezes out
the marijuana advocates who fought for - and in many cases were jailed
- - to move public opinion in favour of legalization.

Councillor Paula Fletcher said 16,000 Canadians have been charged with
marijuana offences since Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced his
government would end pot prohibition.

Many of those who continue to be arrested are visible minorities, she
said, noting that those positioning themselves to be players in the
legal marijuana marketplace include former Toronto police chief Julian
Fantino and former deputy chief Kim Derry. Another former Toronto
chief, Bill Blair, is the Liberal MP overseeing the new federal
marijuana regime.

The provincial rules would restrict the legal smoking of pot to
people's homes. Toronto council asked the medical officer of health to
advise on safe places for people who require medical marijuana to
consume it outside their homes.
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