About a fifth of Ontario’s population — 2.8 million people — live in places where selling cannabis is illegal.
For over a year, almost no Ontario community had cannabis retail whether it wanted any or not and stores opened slowly compared to most other provinces.
But as Ontario seeks to quickly expand its cannabis store network starting this spring, it will start to be a serious obstacle, observers say.
In late 2018 and early 2019, hundreds of Ontario communities had to make a decision, and make it pretty quickly, in response to a provincial deadline.
Would they allow cannabis retail, a decision they weren’t allowed to reverse, with no control over where stores would be sited? Or would they vote to ban it, a decision they could always change, and which had no immediate consequences?
BY PATRICK CAIN GLOBAL NEWS
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