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News (Media Awareness Project) - CN BC: Pot Advocate Fears Public Input On Zoning
Title:CN BC: Pot Advocate Fears Public Input On Zoning
Published On:2012-01-25
Source:Kamloops Daily News (CN BC)
Fetched On:2012-01-28 06:00:32

Proposed Use Called a Stretch

A public hearing to rezone a property that licensed medical marijuana
advocate Carl Anderson wants to use as a pot nursery would compromise

But the City has no flexibility in the requirement, the director of
development and engineering services said Tuesday.

"We told him planning would support the zoning at that site for
temporary use, but he would have to go through the public input," said
David Trawin.

Anderson appeared before council to explain why he felt the use should
be allowed, as well as why he didn't want to proceed with a public
hearing to rezone the site.

He said he and 13 other medical marijuana licence holders would pool
their permits so the pot plants could be grown in one place, under
safe conditions and out of residential areas.

Without that, there will be grow-ops in houses throughout the city, he

"I really want to do the right thing," he said.

Anderson said since the City shut down the medical marijuana
dispensary he was running on Tranquille Road, he's had to have plants
at his home. As a result, he's had break-in attempts there at least
once a month and he's concerned for his family's safety.

The wrong people are prospering while those trying to do the right
thing are being blocked, he said.

"Do you want me to pollute the community with residential

He had previously met with City staff and Mayor Peter Milobar to
discuss the problem of the rezoning.

Milobar said Anderson has a disagreement with staff about the
permitted uses that zoning at the property allows.

But the public hearing is part of the process the City has to operate
under, he said.

Anderson said he felt the zoning allowed a nursery, but Trawin said
it's for nursery-related retail sales, not for actual plant growing.

"We ran it by our lawyers. They said it's a stretch," Trawin said of
Anderson's interpretation.

Anderson said without a place to grow the plants safely, medical
marijuana users are being forced to turn to unsavory characters for
their pot.

Trawin said he sympathized with Anderson's situation, but what the
medical marijuana advocate really needs to find is a property that's
zoned for agricultural use.

The rezoning application would simply describe the use as "nursery,"
Trawin said, without specifying what type of plants would be grown at
the building. The site in question also needs some building code upgrades.
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