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More Cannabis Stores Coming to GTA Region as Province Moves Forward with Next Round Allocations

Photo by Get Budding on Unsplash
Photo by Get Budding on Unsplash

The Province of Ontario announced today (Wednesday, July 3) it is moving ahead with its next round of cannabis store allocations.

Of the 50 new stores, 42 will be allocated by lottery and 8 with be available for stores on First Nations reserves — the Greater Toronto Area Region (which includes Halton, Toronto and Peel) is set to receive 6 stores. The Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO) has released the pre-qualification requirements, application process and timelines for anyone interested in applying for one of the 50 new stores to be authorized by the Provincial government

The AGCO is holding a lottery on Aug. 20 and will announced the results of the selected 42 applications within 24 hours. Participants of the lottery must first meet the pre-qualification criteria set out by the Province, including demonstrating they have the financial capacity to open a cannabis retail store and have secured suitable retail space that could be used for it.

The 8 store authorizations dedicated to First Nations reserves will be available on a first-come, first-served basis and must have Band Council approval to open and operate a store.

During our May 27 meeting, Burlington Council unanimously approved the City Manager’s Office report on CM-8-19 Cannabis Retail Store Guideline with amendments to the Community Preferences section of the City of Burlington Cannabis Retail Store Guidelines attached as Appendix A to City Manager’s office report CM-8-19 by changing, in the first bullet point, 150 metre buffer to 500 metre buffer and by adding, in the third bullet point, ‘a 500 metre’ between the words ‘maintain’ and ‘separation’.

The report was based on endorsing a similar resolution (Draft Resolution-Cannabis-LUMCO_Mayor Davis-Final) passed by the Large Urban Mayor’s Caucus of Ontario. This resolution was drafted by a sub-committee of mayors — two members from municipalities that opted-in (and of which I am one) and two from municipalities that opted-out.

MY TAKE:

City of Burlington staff and Council are monitoring this Provincial announcement and will let the public know as soon as we learn if any of the next round of cannabis stores may come to Burlington, and their locations. Council and LUMCO have passed resolutions on the principles for determining locations for cannabis stores that we are advocating to the Province.

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