(Photo: Black Press files)

Marijuana

Surrey receives nine cannabis store applications but is considering none

City officials say Surrey is not accepting any applications, as cannabis retail and production remains prohibited

Surrey officials say the city has received nine applications for cannabis retail licences, but none will be considered.

“All have been told that the City of Surrey is not accepting any applications,” said Jas Rehal, the City of Surrey’s Director of Public Safety Operations.

“The bylaw prohibiting cannabis retail and production in Surrey has not changed and remains in effect,” Rehal added, referring to policies established under the the reign of past civic governments.

Currently, Surrey does not permit dispensaries. City bylaws did not permit them prior to the national legalization of recreational pot on Oct. 17, 2018, and the rules have not been changed since to allow for them.

See also: No pot shops opening in Surrey anytime soon

See also: City of Surrey ponders its pot plan (Feb. 7, 2018)

Two cannabis stores in Vancouver were the first to legally open their doors in that city last weekend after receiving the necessary approvals from both provincial and civic government. City Cannabis Co. and Evergreen Cannabis Society opened on Jan. 4 and 5, respectively.

But so far, the door is not being opened for would-be cannabis retailers in Surrey.

Along the campaign trail this fall, Surrey Mayor Doug McCallum adamantly opposed allowing pot shops to set up in the city.

Ahead of his election on Oct. 20, McCallum said he is against cannabis stores and production operations in Surrey “until we get crime under control.”

McCallum also said he fully expects all applications to follow the new “public engagement processes” that will be developed via a Mayor’s Standing Committee.

“My biggest concern is that (legalization) puts another layer of uncertainty on our city when our residents already feel unsafe,” he said at the time. “I don’t think we should be discussing potential benefits until the risks are known. This should not be about money.”

See also: Surrey Fire Chief says allowing people to grow pot at home is ‘wrong-headed

See also: Surrey Board of Trade releases cannabis ‘support guide’ for businesses

Prior to McCallum replacing former mayor Linda Hepner on Oct. 20, 2018, then-public safety director Terry Waterhouse (who is now leading the city’s transition to a municipal force) said “a big question mark” would be the direction of Surrey’s incoming mayor and council.

And, Waterhouse said the city was “still working through the framework at various steps, and that still required more information and input from the province in terms of knowing what the retail aspect will look like.”

Cities don’t yet know what per cent of revenues they would see from cannabis taxation.

During last September’s Union of B.C. Municipalities convention in Whistler, a resolution was passed that asked for 40 per cent of the initial $125 million in revenue to be shared with municipalities for the first two years after legalization. Anything in excess of that would be shared 50-50.

The money would be distributed on a per capita basis, with all communities getting at least $10,000. But no details regarding pot revenue-sharing have been publicly release since that time.

B.C.’s Liquor and Cannabis Regulation Branch says it has received 18 paid applications for cannabis retail licenses in the Surrey/Fraser Valley area. Of those, 11 have been referred to local governments of Indigenous nations for approval, and zero have received approval.

Meantime, 102 paid cannabis retail applications have been submitted for the Greater Vancouver/Sunshine Coast area. Of those, three licenses have been issued thus far.

Another three licenses have been issued in the “Interior and the North” area of B.C.

In total, six retail licenses have been issued in B.C. as of Jan. 4.

See also: Pot, taxes and Greyhound top issues as B.C. local politicians dig into policy

See also: Mother of Surrey woman killed by drunk driver weighs in on proposed impaired driving laws

See also: Driving Miss Hazy: What will happen on our roads once recreational pot is legal?

See also: ‘Police are ready’ for legal pot, say Canadian chiefs

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

BC Liberal Leader Andrew Wilkinson bottle-feeds a calf at a dairy farm in South Surrey Tuesday morning. (Aaron Hinks photo)
BC Liberal Leader makes stop in South Surrey

Business tax, mental health supports among topics addressed by Andrew Wilkinson

Vancouver Police were at a White Rock home Oct. 20 to conduct a search warrant. (Aaron Hinks photo)
ERT response to White Rock home connected to homicide: police

Search underway in the 15800-block of Prospect Crescent

Police tape is shown in Toronto Tuesday, May 2, 2017. (Graeme Roy/The Canadian Press)
CRIME STOPPERS: ‘Most wanted’ for the week of Oct. 18

Crime Stoppers’ weekly list based on information provided by police investigators

Ivan Scott. (Aaron Hinks photo)
Surrey mayor enters word war with speakers, councillor

McCallum calls brief recess after asking two speakers to leave chambers

Signs at a new COVID-19 testing and collection centre at 14577 66th Ave. in Surrey. It was relocated from an urgent primary care centre near Surrey Memorial Hospital. This new centre allows for up to 800 tests per day, which is 550 more than the previous centre, according to Fraser Health. (Photo: Lauren Collins)
Surrey’s COVID-19 case count exceeds 1,800

About 800 new cases in September

FILE – People wait in line at a COVID-19 testing facility in Burnaby, B.C., on Thursday, August 13, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
167 new COVID-19 cases, 1 death recorded as B.C. enters 2nd wave

Three new healthcare outbreaks also announced

Maple Meadows Station’s new Bike Parkade. TransLink photo
TransLink to remove abandoned or discarded bicycles from bike parkades

Rules at TransLink bike parkades ask customers to use facilities for single day use only

This 2020 electron microscope image made available by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases shows a Novel Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 particle isolated from a patient, in a laboratory in Fort Detrick, Md. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-NIAID/NIH via AP
At least 49 cases of COVID-19 linked to wedding in Calgary: Alberta Health

McMillan says the city of Calgary has recently seen several outbreaks linked to social gatherings

UBC geoscientists discovered the wreckage of a decades-old crash during an expedition on a mountain near Harrison Lake. (Submitted photo)
Wreckage of decades-old plane crash discovered on mountain near Harrison Lake

A team of Sts’ailes Community School students helped discover the twisted metal embedded in a glacier

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

The official search to locate Jordan Naterer was suspended Saturday Oct. 17. Photo courtesy of VPD.
‘I am not leaving without my son,’ says mother of missing Manning Park hiker

Family and friends continue to search for Jordan Naterer, after official efforts suspended

A bear similar to this black bear is believed responsible for killing a llama in Saanich on Oct. 19. (Black Press Media file photo)
Bear kills llama on Vancouver Island, prompting concerns over livestock

Officers could not track the bear they feel may not fear humans

RCMP crest. (Black Press Media files)
RCMP cleared in fatal shooting of armed Lytton man in distress, police watchdog finds

IIO spoke to seven civillian witnesses and 11 police officers in coming to its decision

Most Read