Cannabis Legalization Information

Right now it is only legal to use cannabis if you have a medical prescription.

Camrose County is currently accepting applications for cannabis retail sales uses, so that stores can begin development in anticipation of opening on when cannabis sales are legalized on October 17, 2018. Selling cannabis for non-medicinal purposes is still illegal.

The federal government has introduced a bill to legalize recreational cannabis on October 17, 2018.  This bill provides a plan for regulating cannabis and sets standards for health and safety, identifies legal and criminal actions related to recreational cannabis, and outlines what aspects of cannabis regulation are the responsibility of the provinces.

Under the new federal and provincial legislation, local municipalities are responsible for Retail Locations and Rules; Public Consumption; Land Use and Zoning; and Education.

August 14, 2018 - Update - Cannabis Consumption

After lengthy discussion Camrose County Council directed administration to draft an amendment to the Parks Control Bylaw, that would ban cannabis at our public parks. The proposal will go back to Council on September 11 for consideration. 

August 14, 2018 - Update - Cannabis Retail Sales - Fee Approved

On August 14, 2018 Camrose County Council approved the Development Permit Application Fee of $300 for Cannabis Retail Use.

June 26, 2018: Update - Cannabis Retail Sales - Locations and Requirements Approved

After the Public Hearing on June 26th at 9:30a.m. Council approved Bylaw 1417 to amend the Land Use Bylaw. The amendment adds cannabis definitions to the Bylaw, provides for Cannabis Retail Sales in the UC - Urban Commercial District as a discretionary use, and provides several development permit requirements for any proposed Cannabis Retail Use.

June 26, 2018: Update - Public Consumption

Administration presented for options for addressing public consumption.

  1. Follow Provincial Rules Only
  2. Follow Provincial Rules, with added restrictions at our parks
  3. Create a smoking bylaw to address all smoking materials
  4. Implement a full ban on cannabis on all public lands

Council directed administration to provide additional details on options 2 & 4. 

May 22, 2018: Update - Public Consumption

Camrose County is still considering the available options to address public consumption of cannabis. We will be working with the community in the next few months to decide what, if any, regulations need to be developed to address concerns about public consumption.

May 8th, 2018: Update - Cannabis Retail Sales

On May 8th, 2018 Camrose County Council gave first reading to bylaw 1417 to amend the Land Use Bylaw to allow for Cannabis Retail Sales when it becomes legal in late summer. The proposed bylaw was created based on feedback from the Cannabis Retail Survey, current legislative requirements and best practices. A copy of the council report, which includes a summary of the survey results to May 1st is available here. The next step is a Public Hearing, which is scheduled for June 26th, 2018 at 9:30am in Camrose County Council Chambers (3755-43 Avenue, Camrose).

Proposed Bylaw Highlights:

  1. Cannabis Retail will only be allowed in the UC – Urban Commercial District, as a discretionary use, meaning neighbours will have a chance to appeal.
  2. Must meet all federal and provincial regulations, including 100m setback from schools, etc.
  3. Must be at least 500m from another cannabis store
  4. Must be landscaped and designed using Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design principles
  5. Can only operate from 10am to 10pm
  6. Must address nuisance, including  odour to satisfaction of Development Authority.

Note: The Cannabis Retail Survey is still open for comments, and the survey results will be shared at the public hearing. 

 April 4, 2018: Update - Cannabis Retail Survey Open

Camrose County is beginning work on regulations for cannabis businesses operating within the County, and possible regulations for public consumption of recreational cannabis.  Public Engagement is underway currently and will continue throughout 2018.  Please take a few minutes to complete a Cannabis Retail Survey related to the location and hours of operation for Cannabis Retail Stores in Camrose County.  Your feedback is important to us.   This page will be updated regularly to include information on the feedback received and on additional opportunities to contribute.

Links to relevant information is provided below. This information is from a variety of reliable sources, however Camrose County does not accept any responsibility or liability for the accuracy, content, completeness, legality or reliability of the information contained on the following websites, and articles.

Federal and Provincial Regulation Websites:

Legalization and Regulation of Cannabis - Government of Canada

Your Cannabis Questions, Answered - Government of Canada

Alberta's Approach to Cannabis Legalization - Government of Alberta

Cannabis - The Alberta Liquor and Gaming Commission

General Cannabis Information:

Canada's Lower Risk Cannabis Use Guidelines

Centre for Addiction and Mental Health: Cannabis Page

Cannabis Talk Kit:  How to talk with Your Teen.  Drug Free Kids Canada

Basics on Cannabis: A Compilation of Research Based Evidence and Guidelines.  The Mathison Centre for Mental Health Research & Education