Quesnel City Council has given first reading to an amended policy on retail cannabis sales and production.

Tanya Turner, the City’s Director of Development Services, says it opens up cannabis retail to be allowed in most of the major commercial retail zones in Quesnel, opens it up to both private and government stores, and no longer limits the number of stores.

It also permits cannabis production in the light industrial zone.

Turner says there are currently two applications for cannabis retail in the city…

“One in the downtown and one in West Quesnel in the Maple Park Mall. Maple Park Mall is a government store and those applications are being reviewed in conjunction with this process going forward. That process, we are just going to get that up on-line for people, so they understand what the process is when you want to apply for cannabis license in the community. It will require a provincial application to be applied for first. We will only start a formal review once we receive the provincial application from the Liquor and Cannabis Regulation Branch.”

Turner says a public hearing on the zoning amendment for cannabis retail has been set for February 5th.

In addition to the city’s process, Turner says applications are also reviewed by the province.

The policy still restricts cannabis retail stores from being within 100 meters of a playground, playfield or school and 50 meters from a residentially zoned property.