Editorial: Legal cannabis shops seems stuck in bureaucratic headache

Why is it taking so long for any marijuana shops to open?

Why is it taking so long for marijuana shops to open in so many communities?

They were operating before it was legal, and now that it is, it seems strange that there’s nowhere to go to buy cannabis, for medicine, recreation or anything else.

The reason existing shops shut down is clear enough, they want to be able to legally open their doors, and their applications could be in jeopardy (not to mention the danger of a police raid like the ones in Port Alberni) should they continue to operate before they get the provincial and local governments’ OK.

But why is it taking so long to get that OK?

You can, of course, get marijuana online from a provincial government store if you’re impatient. It opened for business the moment pot was legalized.

But as for bricks and mortar private stores, officials say the municipal elections slowed down the application processing, and that may be true, but it also begs the question, why weren’t applications being processed long in advance of legalization day? It wasn’t a surprise. Everyone knew it was coming. So why weren’t our governments more prepared?

With just a little bit of forethought, it seems as if cannabis stores could have been all nice and pre-processed, ready to open on Oct. 17. After all, the provincial government online portal was ready. Users, wanna-be users and likely the hopeful shopkeepers are understandably frustrated by the delays, which don’t seem like they’re going to be resolved any time soon.

We’re not advocating for anyone to use cannabis. That’s a personal choice. But it is now a legal product around which legitimate businesses can be built. This also means it’s subject to various bureaucracies. Not necessarily a bad thing, but so far we seem to have stumbled out of the blocks in terms of providing a clear path for the fledgling legal industry.

Many must be hoping that after this initial hiccup, things get better.

Just Posted

Ucluelet Aquarium model spawning inspiration worldwide

Groups from B.C., Nova Scotia, the State of Washington and Scotland are learning from Ucluelet.

Vancouver Island cancer survivor not giving up fight

Kim Angell grows from advocate and blogger to the face of national campaign

Tofino’s housing crisis spilling into hospital

Tofino’s housing crisis is pushing the town’s ‘hidden homeless’ population into the forefront.

Column: CF movie hits home pretty closely to me

Campbell River woman offers perspective on Hollywood’s Five Feet Apart

Vancouver Island firefighters learn to save themselves in ground survival training

Specialized training equipment brought in for Ground Survival Program

Sparks fly as SUV speeds down wrong side of Highway 1 trying to flee RCMP

Captured on video, the vehicle headed westbound against oncoming traffic before crashing

Fundraising campaign launched for man caught in SilverStar avalanche

In only two days, the GoFundMe surpassed its $15,000 goal

Terror at sea: Helicopter rescues frightened cruise passengers in Norway

The Viking Sky cruise ship was carrying 1,300 passengers and crew when it experienced engine trouble

Search and rescue team helicopters injured climber from B.C. provincial park

A 30-year-old woman suffered a suspected lower-limb fracture in Skaha Bluffs Provincial Park

DOJ: Trump campaign did not co-ordinate with Russia in 2016

Attorney General William Barr said special counsel “does not exonerate” Trump of obstructing justice

Trudeau in Vancouver to support Tamara Taggart at Liberal nomination event

The former broadcaster is seeking the nomination for the Vancouver Kingsway riding

Trudeau calls May 6 byelection for B.C. riding of Nanaimo-Ladysmith

The riding opened up when Sheila Malcolmson resigned in January

B.C. VIEWS: The hijacking of our education system gathers speed

Children taught to strike and shout fringe far-left demands

Judges on Twitter? Ethical guidance for those on the bench under review

Canadian judges involvement in community life are among issues under review

Most Read