CREA calls for moratorium on cannabis growing at home

OTTAWA — Canada’s real estate industry organization is calling for a moratorium on growing marijuana at home until the government sets out nationwide regulations for the practice.

Ottawa’s proposed marijuana legalization regulations allow Canadians to grow up to four marijuana plants at their residences after a federal court ruled in 2016 that the government cannot ban medical marijuana patients from growing their own cannabis.

But the Canadian Real Estate Association is proposing an amendment to the regulations that would result in a halt on home cultivation until provinces can enact new regulations after Ottawa provides guidelines on how to do so.

The association argues that four marijuana plants can produce as much as five kilograms of cannabis a year, and in turn have the potential to damage property and increase housing costs.

Canada’s marijuana legalization bill will allow Canadians the right to grow pot under a certain limit, but each province and territory is developing its own legal framework for production and consumption.

Quebec and Manitoba, for example, have chosen to prohibit home cultivation of weed, but the federal justice minister has said that federal marijuana rules will take precedence over provincial law.

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