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Proposed Burlington Cannabis Store on Guelph Line Open for Comments Until Nov. 14

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

Commenting is now open for a proposed cannabis store in Burlington, The Hunny Pot, at 1505 Guelph Line, Units 3-4. The closing date for comments is Nov. 14, 2019.

Anyone can provide comments on a proposed location to the Province’s Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO). The City of Burlington will be submitting comments stating that we do not support the location of this particular store as it does not conform to the set of municipal cannabis retail store guidelines and criteria for preferred locations and other considerations regarding cannabis stores Burlington City Council approved on May 27, 2019.

It also doesn’t conform to the resolution that was brought forward by the subcommittee of the Large Urban Mayors Caucus of Ontario (LUMCO) that I sit on with three other mayors – two from jurisdictions that do not allow cannabis stores, and two that do. That resolution recommended changes to provincial regulations to give municipalities greater control over locations and proliferation of stores and was approved by LUMCO and forwarded to the province.

Retail cannabis stores in our city must be more than 150 metres from any school, as per Provincial mandate. In addition to that the LUMCO resolution and criteria/guidelines passed by Burlington Council both state that a store should strive to maintain a minimum 500 metres buffer distance from sensitive land uses, such as schools.

The 1505 Guelph Line location is approximately 270 m from M.M. Robinson High School.

While we will be submitting comments to the Province that we do not approve of this location, we don’t have the authority to dictate where a store will ultimately be located — that decision rests with the AGCO.

To submit comments on this cannabis store location, visit https://www.iagco.agco.ca/prod/pub/en/Default.aspx?PossePresentation=PublicNoticeSearch and select ‘Cannabis’ in the Category bar and ‘Cannabis Retail Store Authorization’ from the Type: bar, and click ‘Search’. A list of locations will appear — click the ‘File Objection / Submission’ button for the Burlington store from the list of locations.

Comments submitted to the AGCO should relate to the following matters of public interest:

  • Protecting public health and safety;
  • Protecting youth and restricting their access to cannabis;
  • Preventing illicit activities in relation to cannabis.

I and City staff have met with owners of The Hunny Pot and we conveyed to them that we would not be supportive of that location. I will also be speaking with our Burlington Economic Development Corporation (BEDC) and asking them to put together a list of appropriate locations that also meet the needs of cannabis stores, such as the necessary land size for a store.

If you are a cannabis business that is looking to locate in Burlington, we welcome you and ask that you comply with our guidelines. In the short-term, please contact Burlington Ec Dev and they can help you find a suitable location in our city.

MY TAKE:

After much public feedback and debate, the City of Burlington opted in to permitting retail cannabis stores earlier this year, and we consider them a legitimate part of our business community.  While we learn from the launch of this new industry and watch it evolve, we have established our own local guidelines for where we would like to see the locations of these stores and their proximity to sensitive land uses, one of which is being 500 metres away from any school.  The Hunny Pot does not meet that requirement and we will therefore not be supporting it in our comments to the AGCO.

— Burlington Mayor Marianne Meed Ward

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*Posted by John Bkila, Mayor’s Media and Digital Communications Specialist.

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8 thoughts on “Proposed Burlington Cannabis Store on Guelph Line Open for Comments Until Nov. 14”

  1. I think that it is wrong that the provincial government sets the guidelines for cannabis stores. They should set minimum requirements but towns and municipalities should have the right to make the requirements more stringent. I understand that people are saying that it is no closer than beer or alcohol stores but we have been dealing with them for a long time now. Legalized cannabis is still in its infancy and I applaud any rules and guidelines the town of Burlington want to create over and above provincial guidelines.

  2. Totally got this wrong Mayor and city council. When you approved cannabis stores in town, this was bound to happen.

    Even though I do not consume myself, I have no problem with the location. If they have met the government regulations, then it’s fine by me. Plus it’s legal product. What about the LCBO and BEER store across the street? Or alcohol in the Fortinos? That’s also right by a school. Plus the kids are buying in the school parking lot (like they did 20 years ago when I went to school) not at a store by the school.

    I think the city of Burlington has bigger problems to worry about.

  3. Definitely do not want a cannabis store in that location. I believe the location should be chosen based on the guidelines and this one is too close to a school.

  4. I believe the rules should be consistent with the rules regarding retailing of other products which are harmful to minors, such as tobacco and alcohol. I note that directly across the street from the proposed location is a Beer Store, so it would seem a bit hypocritical to single out the cannabis retailers.

    The proposed location meets the provincial guidelines, and with the rules being what they are, the store will be very sterile, product will not be consumed on site and it is very unlikely that this will stimulate additional interest in cannabis by young people. Lets be honest, those that do have an interest in cannabis are already obtaining it from the black market in a far more convenient manner than through legal channels. So ultimately I do not feel that the existence of this store will have much influence on students. That business has to deal with enough red tape as it is.

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