Residential pot ban approved in Langley Township

Medicinal marijuana grow-ops will not be allowed in homes after March 31, due to changes in federa1 rules.

A planned ban on medical marijuana growing in residential neighbourhoods has been approved by Township council.

But the fate of another proposed ban, on using Langley farmland for the same purpose, remains up in the air.

The vote on the residential ban at the Feb. 24 evening meeting of council took less than a minute. It was unanimous.

The regulation is aimed at the many small medical marijuana grow-ops that are currently licensed by the federal government to provide product.

After March 31, all of the small-scale growing licenses issued by the federal government are set to expire under new medicinal marijuana regulations that take effect April 1.

That’s when growing will switch from the current system of small operations with one or two clients to larger commercial-style bulk growing.

The just-approved changes to the property safety bylaw would impose a fine of at least $500 and as much as $10,000 a day on anyone who currently has a medical marijuana production licence if they continue cultivating pot plants after the law changes.

The Township also wants to ban marijuana production on the Agricultural Land Reserve (ALR) that makes up 75 per cent of the Township, but has yet to get a response from the provincial government to the proposed regulation that would restrict growing to industrial areas.

Langley, Abbotsford, Delta and Kelowna are required by law to get provincial approval for any regulations that might affect farming within the Agricultural Land Reserve (ALR) inside their borders.

On Feb. 18, Township Mayor Jack Froese and Abbotsford Mayor Bruce Banman met with provincial Agriculture Minister Pat Pimm in Victoria to press for a decision before the law changes.

Froese said the provincial minister was noncommittal.

“They’re not commenting one way or the other,” Froese said.

The Langley mayor said he and his Abbotsford counterpart told the minister that a decision needs to come before April 1.

“There are people waiting for an answer,” Froese said.

“I expect it will come soon.”

The Agricultural Land Commission (ALC), the agency that administers the ALR, recently declared that medical marijuana growing on agricultural land is protected under farming regulations that override the the Township of Langley’s authority.

At least eight businesses, seven of them located on agricultural land, have   expressed interest in growing medicinal marijuana in Langley Township.

One of them, Koch Greenhouses owner Bruce Bakker, said the attempt to restrict medicinal marijuana cultivation to industrial areas was “troubling” because it was drafted without consulting farmers.

Just Posted

Elementary b-ball teams receive surprise game visit from ACSS Totems

Two grade 5 co-ed basketball teams were cheered on by players from the highschool Totems team.

Betty Gilbert b-ball boys defeat HD Stafford 38-28

Betty Gilbert’s grade 6 boys opened basketball season with a win against HD Stafford Tuesday.

Langley teams headed to upcoming basketball provincials

Teams from around B.C. converge on the Langley Events Centre for provincial tournaments.

Risk of ‘deadly avalanches’ leads to warning for B.C.’s south coast

Weak layer of snow on Vancouver Island, Lower Mainland could trigger an avalanche

Kodiaks up 3-1 in playoff series

The Kodiaks lost against the Ice Hawks Tuesday but have taken the lead in Wednesday’s home game.

Sell regulated heroin to curb B.C.’s overdose problem: report

B.C. Centre on Substance Use points to organized crime and money-laundering as contributing factors

B.C. Speaker Darryl Plecas resumes battle with suspended staff

Committee meets at B.C. legislature to consider new allegations

North BC broken axle derailment could happen again: TSB

CN coal train derailment caused by broken axle can happen again without a different way to inspect

Former B.C. fire chief sues his city after termination

Keith Green’s civil claim says that he believes he was wrongfully terminated

B.C. man in wheelchair following police shooting

“Shots were fired by police and the Kelowna man was transported to the hospital with serious injuries.”

Peter Tork, Monkees’ lovable bass-guitar player, dies at 77

Tork, Micky Dolenz, David Jones and Michael Nesmith formed the made-for-television rock band

From a drunk judge to Clifford Olson: George Garrett recounts a life in B.C. news radio

New book from ‘Intrepid Reporter’ George Garrett offers readers a glimpse behind the headlines

Wife remembers B.C. man killed in possible case of mistaken identity

Rex Gill was in Kamloops working to support his family after oilfield job dried up

Millennial men least likely to have a family doctor: Statistics Canada

Report found more women have primary care physicians, compared with men

Most Read