Mountain View County restricts sites for medical marijuana

Medical marijuana crops won’t be sprouting up on Mountain View County farms after council recently approved bylaw changes.

Medical marijuana crops won’t be sprouting up on Mountain View County farms after council recently approved bylaw changes.

The municipality was prompted to review its Land Use Bylaw when a proposed development in a rural area north of Cremona by a medical marijuana grower ignited controversy.

A number of rural residents were upset when a building permit was issued to the company, Releaf Inc., for a medical marijuana growing facility. Under the county’s existing Land Use Bylaw, the company was not required to apply for a development permit because a facility for horticultural use — which includes intensively cultivated plants for medicinal purposes — is considered a permitted use.

The bylaw was silent on medical marijuana specifically.

Council acknowledged residents’ concerns that the process didn’t require a public hearing. Some property owners also said a medical marijuana operation could hurt surrounding property values and raises security issues that don’t exist with typical greenhouses.

In response to the public outcry, Mountain View County passed amendments to its bylaws earlier this month to restrict future medical marijuana facilities to business parks or heavy industrial sites. A number of regulations apply to deal with safety and risk issues.

The new county rules don’t apply to Releaf’s application.

Mountain View Coun. Al Kemmere said the changes reflect the majority of feedback received from residents about how to deal with future medical marijuana applications.

Councillors also saw the value in limiting the operations to easily accessible and visible sites apart from residential areas and “not kind of hidden out in the back 40.”

Health Canada must approve any medical marijuana facility licence, which carries an extensive list of requirements.

The federal government announced that starting on April 1, only commercial-sized companies will be able to produce and distribute the plants to people with valid prescriptions.

Rocky View County, in the Calgary area, also recently updated is bylaws after a landowner began converting a decommissioned greenhouse for medical marijuana use.

Under Rocky View’s new bylaw, medical marijuana facilities are restricted to business and industrial areas and their property line must be at least 400 metres from the boundary of any school or residential area.

pcowley@bprda.wpengine.com

Just Posted

PHOTOS: Aaron Goodvin sings at Westerner Days

Aaron Goodvin performed at Westerner Days Wednesday.… Continue reading

Severe thunderstorm watch in effect for Central Alberta

There’s a severe thunderstorm watch in effect for Red Deer and the… Continue reading

WATCH: Sun shines on Red Deer’s Westerner Days parade

George Young has been a Westerner Days parade marshal for about 28… Continue reading

Central Alberta receives funding for regional emergency training

Alberta Municipal Affairs announces $160,000 for training on top of $40,000 previously received

WATCH: Global FMX at Westerner Days

There are three freestyle motocross shows a day at Westerner Park this week

Study links air pollution to drop in national park visitors

DENVER — Visitors appear to be steering clear of some U.S. national… Continue reading

Banff’s bathroom bears returned to the park after 15 months of rehab in Ontari

Three cubs found abandoned in a washroom along the Trans-Canada Highway in… Continue reading

Canada could get caught in cross-fire of U.S. uranium investigation

Canada could get caught in the crossfire after the U.S. Department of… Continue reading

Trudeau shuffles familiar faces, adds new ones to expanded cabinet

OTTAWA — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has unveiled his pre-election cabinet, shuffling… Continue reading

Canada’s premiers meet Indigenous groups, although three major groups decline

BOUCTOUCHE, N.B. — Canada’s premiers are meeting with Indigenous organizations in New… Continue reading

An updated list of federal cabinet ministers following Wednesday’s shuffle

OTTAWA — An updated list of federal cabinet ministers following Wednesday’s shuffle,… Continue reading

Most Read


Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month