Kurt Bauschardt

Alberta’s provincial government has released proposed regulations for retail cannabis operations as Canada moves forward with their tax-and-regulate plan, which sets the legal age at 18 and permits private retailers to open up retail and online stores. The Alberta Gaming and Liquor Commission will oversee distribution, compliance, and enforcement.

Notably, the rules allow citizens to grow up to four cannabis plants and possess up to 30 grams in public. The regulations contain language to eventually allow cannabis “cafes and lounges,” but they will not be permitted when sales are expected to go online July 1. Cannabis sales would not be permitted in “co-location” with alcohol or tobacco.

“Discussions are continuing with the federal government regarding the details of a coordinated approach to the taxation of cannabis,” the framework proposal states. “Taxes must be kept low enough so that prices for legal cannabis are competitive with the illicit market.”

Kathleen Ganley, minister of Justice and solicitor general, called the proposal “the culmination of extensive engagement and research on legalized cannabis.”

“It puts our province in a position to not only meet the federal deadline of July 2018, but does so in a way that is responsible and promotes public health and safety for all Albertans,” she said in a statement.

Quebec and New Brunswick have also unveiled their provincial legalization proposals, while Manitoba lawmakers are preparing legislation focusing on public safety.

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