Cannabis land use bylaw passes

Castor council passed the third and final reading of the land use bylaw which included amendments regarding cannabis at the June 11 meeting.
A public hearing was held prior to the council meeting but there were no written submissions received or citizens present at the hearing.
The bylaw lists “Cannabis Retail Sales” and “Cannabis Café” as discretionary uses in C-1 Central Commercial District, Hwy-C Highway Commercial District and L-1 Light Industrial District.
The bylaw also includes cannabis regulations that state it “must comply with provisions set out in the Provincial Gaming, Liquor and Cannabis act.” Regulations also include an exterior wall cannot be located within 100 meters of a school or healthcare facility nor the boundary to a parcel of land where a school or healthcare facility is located.

Public participation policy
Council has passed a Public Participation Policy which according to the policy, “has been developed to recognize the value of public participation and create opportunities for meaningful public participation in decisions that directly impact the public.”
“It is making sure we are transparent and inclusive as far as public participation,” said Chief Administrative Officer (CAO), Sandi Jackson, “this also includes advertising.”
According to the newly passed policy, “The CAO shall develop and implement a Public Participation Plan in the following circumstances: When new programs or services are being established; When identifying council priorities; When gathering input or formulating recommendations with respect to the Municipality’s strategic plans or business plans; When gathering input or formulating recommendations with respect to the Municipality’s capital plan and/or financial plan; or As otherwise directed by council.”
“Things like the audit report we make available to the public anyway,” said CAO Jackson “A lot of that stuff is already available.”
This policy is to be reviewed at least every four years according to the Municipal Government Act.
“It’s not limited as to when we can add it,” said Coun. Tony Nichols, referring to additions to the policy if council determines it is necessary.
“The policy shall be available for public inspection and may be posted to the Municipality’s website,” states a line of the legislative and policy implications of the Public Participation Policy.

Advertising Bylaw
The first reading of the Advertising Bylaw was passed.
“Gives us the opportunity to advertise in our newsletter, Facebook and on our website,” said CAO Jackson, “It will also regulate, a little bit, how we do things on Facebook.”
“It is very short and to the point,” said CAO Jackson, in regard to the bylaw itself.
This is the first Advertising Bylaw for the Town of Castor. CAO Jackson shared that there is currently a media policy in place, when asked about the current Facebook guidelines.

Emily Wheller
ECA Review

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