Platinum Cannabis, formerly known as Leaf Compassion, is located at the bottom of Johnston Road. ELENA RARDON PHOTO

Port Alberni city council gives green light to retail cannabis stores

Alberni Cannabis and Platinum Cannabis received positive recommendations

Two retail cannabis stores in Port Alberni have received positive recommendations from Port Alberni City Council, which will be passed on to the province for final decision.

Council supported the approval and authorization of Alberni Cannabis on Redford Street (formerly known as OG West) and Platinum Cannabis on Johnston Road (formerly known as Leaf Compassion) after receiving no concerns from neighbours, from the city’s fire department or from the city’s building department. These positive recommendation will be forwarded to the Liquor & Cannabis Regulation Branch (LCRB).

Council already endorsed and approved an application for Alberni Cannabis back in February, but the application was sent back by the province. Manager of bylaw services Flynn Scott said that the city needed to do its “due diligence” by posting notice and providing an opportunity for public input. After posting notice, the city received no comments or concerns from neighbours within a 75 metre radius.

Platinum Cannabis drew the attention of Port Alberni RCMP on legalization day, Oct. 17, 2018, when the business was found to be operating without a provincial license. Despite this, the RCMP provided no comment on the application, said Scott on Monday.

READ: Two Port Alberni cannabis dispensaries raided on legalization day

“There was documentation that the doors were still open following October 17,” said Scott. “However, there was no inspections conducted to confirm what type of sales were being conducted, whether that was cannabis or just accessories or products.”

He added that after a letter of notice was served, the site complied “immediately” by closing its doors.

Port Alberni approved an application from the LCRB for a government-operated cannabis retail store back in February, but there are still several provincial steps for private retail stores to go through before they will be able to open. Both sites will need to go through an inspection as part of the licensing process.

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