Interested in getting in to the legal pot business in Ontario? Your time is coming.
The provincial government of Ontario has announced that they will begin accepting applications for private cannabis retailers come December 17. Successful applicants will be permitted to open shop on April 1.
All licensed cannabis stores must be at least 150 meters from any schools and can only be open between the hours of 9am and 11pm. Additionally, anyone who chooses to keep an illicit dispensary open after cannabis was legalized across Canada last month will be barred from receiving a license to sell marijuana in the legal market.
"The purpose of these regulations is to keep kids safe and to ensure all people operating in this tightly-regulated retail system behave with integrity, honesty, and in the public interest," Attorney General Caroline Mulroney said in a statement sent to CTV News.
C$40 million will be provided by the province over two years to help municipalities with the cost of implementing the new industry.
The province will also be requiring all retail managers and employees of licensed cannabis stores complete a course on responsible cannabis sales.
The provinces sole licensed cannabis retailer - the Ontario Cannabis Store (OCS) - has been plagued with problems over the past month. Because of this, the black market has continued to thrive in Canada's most populous province. While the OCS will have had plenty of time to iron out the kinks by April 1, giving people some brick-and-mortar options for buying cannabis will come as a welcome addition to the market.