West Kelowna Council has agreed to allow recreational cannabis retail stores, once legalization takes effect in Canada next month.
An online survey by the City in July drew over 12-hundred responses with about 74% (917) supporting the stores.
The number of stores will be limited to four, with two in Westbank Centre and two in the Boucherie Centre/West Kelowna Business Park area.
Here’s some other highlights from a special meeting of council on the issue:
– The City will require proponents supported by Council through the provincial referral process to submit a site-specific rezoning application. Once impacts from legalization and land use are better understood, the City will consider preparing a future municipal framework (embedding use into the Zoning Bylaw).
– Council directed staff to develop an evaluation framework for a specified intake period for applications for cannabis retail sales. This will help manage the unknown number of new applications that may be submitted and to shortlist applications for Council’s consideration.
– Council directed staff to review potential minimum separation distances between non-medical cannabis stores and other uses, including youth clubs, and return to council with a recommended minimum separation distance as part of the draft municipal evaluation framework.
· Council agreed to enable stores to operate within the Provincial regulations for hours of operation, from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m.
– Council agreed public consumption of cannabis in the same manner as tobacco smoking or vaping is regulated within existing provisions of the Parks and Public Spaces Bylaw.
Staff will now take this input and develop a municipal framework and bylaw amendments for Council’s consideration at an upcoming meeting.