First decisions on cannabis regulation were announced yesterday by the BC government and now reaction is coming in from one local MLA.

The policy decisions include a 19-year-old minimum age, a government-run wholesale distribution model, and a retail model including both public and private retail opportunities which will be expanded on in 2018.

Prince George – Mackenzie representative, Mike Morris, says he believes the initial announcements are good but does worry about the retail model.

“One of the concerns I have with respect to [the retail model] is to ensure that on the private side, on the public side too, but on the private side more, to ensure that they’re safe from organized crime, intimidation, blackmail, any kind of an attempt to infiltrate the retail sector to sell their own illegal products.”

These decisions were made based on the recent public consultation which saw 48,951 British Columbians leave their input, as well as submissions 141 local and Indigenous governments.

Morris says he is pleased with the reach of the engagement.

“When you start getting over 20,000 or 30,000 public submissions on this, I think that’s pretty reflective of what the overall community looks at,” Morris says.

“I had a look at the report that was published on this and there were interesting results but I think the numbers reflect the overall attitude out there of the general public.”

Morris says although he has not seen any geographical numbers, he expects northern BC was represented well when compared to the more heavily populated lower mainland.