Canada: Committee To Review Where Edmontonians Can Smoke Cannabis

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With cannabis expected to become legal later this year, the City of Edmonton is figuring out details on where and if they will allow public consumption.

The city is considering two options for smoking weed out in the open: The first one does not allow for public consumption but has some exceptions, and the second one follows the provincial model with some additional restrictions.

Option #1 – No public consumption with exceptions

Where you can smoke or vape cannabis:

• Small parks, walking trails outside the River Valley and other types of parkland with no amenities for children

• At events or festivals with approved 18-and-over cannabis gardens separated from other festival goers

• In any other area approved by the City Manager

Where you cannot smoke or vape cannabis:

• Schools or hospitals

• Inside buildings, patios, public vehicles or substantially enclosed areas

• Parklands with playgrounds, skate or bicycle parks, sports fields, cemeteries, zoos, ski hills, golf courses, skating rinks, outdoor pools or spray parks, outdoor theatres and off-leash areas

• Family-friendly City attractions, such as Fort Edmonton Park or Sir Winston Churchill Square

• Sidewalks, roadways, boulevards or alleyways

• Private properties where the public has implied invitation to access, such as mall parking lots

• North Saskatchewan River Valley (Council will give additional consideration)

Option #2 – Provincial model with additional restrictions

The province will allow Albertans to consume cannabis in their homes and in certain public spaces where smoking tobacco is allowed, but it will be banned in vehicles.

Where you can smoke or vape cannabis:

• Walking trails, grassed utility lines and in parks 30 metres from playgrounds, sports fields, spray parks, outdoor pools, skating rinks, skate parks, and other children events or amenities, including parks in the River Valley

• At events or festivals with approved 18-and-over cannabis gardens separated from other festival goers

• Sidewalks, boulevards, alleyways, or roadways 10 metres from entrances, open windows and bus stops.

• On private property, except inside buildings or patio where the public has implied invitation to access (Subject to landowner rules)

Where you cannot smoke or vape cannabis:

• Inside buildings, patios, public vehicles or substantially enclosed areas

• Schools, child-care facilities, hospitals, campgrounds, golf courses, ski hills, off-leash areas and cemeteries

• Within 30 metres of sports fields, playgrounds, zoos, bicycle or skate parks, outdoor pools or spray parks, outdoor theatres, skating rinks and other children amenities

• Family-friendly City attractions, such as Fort Edmonton Park or Sir Winston Churchill Square

• Within 10 metres or doorways, open windows and public transit stations

The Administration’s report outlining both options said the first one is more likely to be challenged legally given how restrictive it is.

The two options will go to the Community and Public Services Committee on June 6, and the preferred option will be selected by July 4.

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