Decriminalize but not legalize pot

UBCM votes to send message to Ottawa on decriminalization of marijuana

Sooke Mayor Wendal Milne

Mayor Wendal Milne wants people to know the vote to decriminalize marijuana at the Union of B.C. Municipalities (UNBC) held last week in Victoria is about decriminalization, not legalization.

“I support decriminalization for possession of marijuana,” said Milne after the conference on Friday.

He went on to say that the resulting bureaucratic paperwork was onerous and a criminal record for simple possession was not warranted.

“It shouldn’t be legal, we’re not making it legal, we are decriminalizing it,” reiterated Milne. He said selling marijuana would still be a criminal offense, but he didn’t think a kid should have a life-long criminal record for smoking a joint. He did not think marijuana should be used opening around schools or on the streets.

The resolution brought forward by the District of Metchosin to be send to the federal government states:

WHEREAS marijuana prohibition is a failed policy which has cost millions of dollars in police, court, jail and social costs;

AND WHEREAS the decriminalization and regulation of marijuana would provide tax revenues:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that UBCM call on the appropriate government to decriminalize marijuana and research the regulation and taxation of marijuana.

Those who voted in favour of the resolution join a number of former and current mayors, the Health Officers Council of B.C., and four former B.C. attorneys generals who have been calling for an end to marijuana prohibition.

Mayor Milne found his first UBCM experience to be good. He said there were lots of resources available in relation to economic development, jobs, economy, etc., from the present elected government. Networking was useful in that he got to talk to other councils and mayors from municipalities of the same size as Sooke.

“They have some of the same problems,” he said. “We don’t have to re-invent the wheel.”

He said cooperation and getting to know people was probably the biggest thing he learned at the conference.

The mayors of B.C. municipalities have gotten together for a Mayors’ Caucus and Milne said there are so many issues they all have in common. One of them is long term infrastructure and funding and waiting for funding from the higher levels of government.

He said a lot can be done electronically as bringing all the mayors together would be expensive and time consuming.

Milne said the mayors are saying just because an election is coming up doesn’t mean they shouldn’t get a say on what their priorities are. They need to get back to basics. He mentioned things such as, receiving funding for “beautification” projects rather than more substantial projects. He mentioned a grant of $250,000 for a trail alongside Throup Road which would be lost if not completed, but the district needs the road first, not the trail.”

All in all, said Milne, it was a good experience.

Just Posted

‘It consumed my life’: Inside the world of gaming addiction

World Health Organization classifies gaming disorder as a mental health condition

Victoria seniors want to know more about marijuana

Four presentations on the medical properties of cannabis for seniors come to Victoria

Victoria gears up to axe free parking on Sundays

Council vote puts Sunday parking fees towards bus passes for youth

Head of Victoria homebuilders says provincial budget won’t solve housing crisis

Casey Edge of Victoria Residential Builders Association dismisses more modular housing as a band-aid

Black Press readers share photos of their favourite critters on #LoveYourPetDay

Greater Victoria is raining cats and dogs…and snails and goats

Ontario man accused of killing 11-year-old daughter dies in hospital, police say

Roopesh Rajkumar had been hospitalized with what police described as a self-inflicted gunshot wound

Manitoba ‘pauses’ link with ex-B.C. premier Gordon Campbell after allegations

Campbell had been hired to review two major hydro projects

City of Port Alberni cancels tourist train operations for 2019

Steam train to McLean Mill is out of commission for repairs; city wants to re-examine rail costs

Heritage minute features Japanese-Canadian baseball team, internment

The Vancouver Asahi baseball team won various championships across the Pacific Northwest

UPDATE: Woman, off-duty cop in critical condition after stabbing outside B.C. elementary school

The officer was interceding in an alleged assault when he and the woman were stabbed

$10-a-day child care not in 2019 budget, but advocate not irked

Sharon Gregson with the Coalition of Child Care Advocates of B.C. says NDP on track to deliver promise

What is Democracy? takes another crack at Sooke

Awareness Film Night feature set for Feb. 28

B.C. Seniors Advocate questions labour shortage in care homes

Are there really no workers, or are care aide wages too low?

Most Read