The results from the City of Revelstoke’s Cannabis Survey are in.
Feedback from residents was collected as part of the planning process for the creation of a municipal framework that will regulate local production and sales of cannabis when federal legalization comes through in October.
A total of 857 people participated in the survey, 94 per cent of which were permanent residents of Revelstoke, 4 per cent were seasonal residents and 15 people did the survey who are not residents of the city. The demographic with the most respondents in the city were 25-34 year olds at 34 per cent.
When answering the question “Are you interested in opening a cannabis business in the City of Revelstoke when the federal legalisation takes effect on Oct. 17, 2018,” 66 people chose “yes” and 154 said “maybe” while the rest said no.
Though 46 per cent of respondents said they were not concerned about the legalisation of cannabis, the other top concerns were youth access to cannabis and public smoking and vaping of cannabis. Of least concern was the “Operation of cannabis stores (i.e. hours of operation)” closely followed by “Cannabis store signage and advertising”.
When asked if they would support retail storefront cannabis sales in the city, 78 per cent, or 669 people, said yes, 12 per cent or 105 people said no and 10 per cent, or 82 people, said that they were unsure.
|As part of the federal legalization of cannabis, individuals will be allowed to grow their own plants. (Black Press file photo)|
The majority of the people who took the survey were also in support of both indoor and outdoor cannabis production in the City of Revelstoke, at 66 per cent. Almost 14 per cent said they were against any kind of cannabis production in the city, while 9 per cent were in favour of only indoor production and 2 per cent were in favour of only outdoor production. 77 people, or nine per cent, were unsure where they stood on the matter.
Survey respondents would also like to see privately run cannabis retail stores in the city, with 73 per cent saying private run retail stores should not be prohibited in Revelstoke. In the upcoming provincial cannabis regulations, cannabis sales are going to be regulated through the Liquor and Cannabis Regulation Branch and will include a combination of government-run and private retail stores.
The survey went on to ask where respondents thought cannabis should be sold as well as appropriate areas where it should be grown.
Respondents were split almost down the middle when asked if the city should regulate the number of retail stores within the city with 408 people saying yes, 416 people saying no and 32 people saying they were unsure.
On the other hand 60 per cent of respondents said that the city should let the market decide instead of regulating the number cannabis production facilities in the city, while 33 per cent said the number should be regulated and 7 per cent said they were unsure.
The survey also covered areas such as when cannabis retail stores should be open, thoughts on the minimum distance requirements of cannabis retail stores from public places such as schools, parks, day cares, youth facilities and public recreation facilities, as well as the minimum distance between retail stores.
The vast majority of respondents said they think individuals should be allowed to grow their cannabis plants outdoors, with 80 per cent in favour, 15 per cent saying indoors only and 5 per cent unsure.
The city also asked questions about where consumption of cannabis should be allowed and asked for comments from the respondents.
The results of the survey are being presented to council at their Tuesday meeting where the next steps in developing the Cannabis Regulator Framework will be discussed.