BENJAMIN PRIEBE The Standard
UXBRIDGE: The matter is far from being rolled up, but a group has notified the township of their plans to become a licensed producer of medical marijuana through Health Canada.
The matter was discussed by council at their meeting on the evening of Monday, March 24, after receiving a report from township planning consultant Liz Howson.
Mayor Gerri Lynn O'Connor was quick to point out that a decision on the matter ultimately lies with the federal government, and simply because a proponent has made an application, it is by no means a guarantee that they will be granted a licence by Health Canada.
"This is federally regulated, and we have next to no say," commented Mayor O'Connor. "This is not a done deal by any stretch of the imagination, and I think that out of 100 applications, they might pick one."
The proponent of the group is Kandavel Palanivel, a registered pharmacist who currently owns and operates a number of GTA pharmacies.
If approved by Health Canada, the operation is looking to set up shop at a 115 acre farm on Durham Rd. 30, and would be using an 8,000 square foot barn currently on the property, that would be renovated to allow for the growing of cannabis plants.
Under Health Canada regulations, the property would have a number of security and surveillance measures in place, approved by Health Canada, which would include a perimeter fence, an alarm with motion detection and video camera monitoring with staff on site at all times for additional protection. The facility will also restrict visitors and segregate growing and storage areas as required by regulations laid out by the federal government.
Councillors held off on granting a letter of support to the group, choosing to wait until after a meeting with area residents at Zephyr Hall at 7 p.m., on Wednesday, April 2.
However, council did approve Ms. Howson's recommendation that the municipality request that the proponent contribute to the township's costs of the review of the proposal to date.
Also, council directed staff to develop a fee schedule for the review of similar proposals in the future, as township staff added that with marijuana being an emerging industry, more applications may be forthcoming.
"My understanding is that there has been other interest in a medical marijuana operation, so there may be more coming down the pipe," added Ms. Howson.
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