New cannabis laws will have big impact on local governments

Local governments need to prepare for the impacts of a major new industry as Canada moves toward changes in marijuana laws.

A presentation by Denise McCabe and Kaitlynn Cumming of Fulton & Company was one of the most interesting sessions I attended during the annual convention of the Southern Interior Local Government Association at Sun Peaks recently.

The purpose of Bill C-45, the Cannabis Act, is to reduce organized crime, restrict youth consumption and allow for legalized recreational use of marijuana.

Whether or not it accomplishes all of those things, another result will be the creation of an industry conservatively estimated at $22.6 billion.

As the existing medical-marijuana industry expands into recreational marijuana, production will increase 10-fold.

This rapid expansion won’t be through Mom and Pop operations but largely via mega-farms. McCabe gave as one example plans for an indoor growing facility of close to 790,000 sq. ft. on 30 acres of property.

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