Prime Minister Justin Trudeau rises during Question Period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Wednesday, June 6, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/ Patrick Doyle

Feds avert possible delay of marijuana bill

Promise more funding for Indigenous mental health and addiction treatment services, special help for businesses

The Trudeau government has averted a potential confrontation with Indigenous senators that could have delayed the legalization of recreational marijuana.

The 11 members of the Senate’s Aboriginal Peoples’ committee had planned to support a Conservative amendment that would have deferred implementing Bill C-45, pending a report on government efforts to address the concerns of Indigenous communities.

That could have been enough to ensure the amendment passed, given that other senators are also sympathetic to the concerns of some First Nations, who say they have not been properly consulted on the measure.

But just prior to the debate, Health Minister Ginette Petitpas Taylor and Indigenous Services Minister Jane Philpott sent a letter to the committee, promising a full report to Parliament in September and another within 12 months.

The ministers also promised more funding for Indigenous mental health and addiction treatment services, special help for Indigenous businesses to navigate the licensing process to grow marijuana and consultation on jurisdictional and revenue-sharing issues.

As a result, committee chair Lillian Dyck says Indigenous senators have achieved more than they’d hoped to do with the amendment from Conservative Sen. Dennis Patterson, who says he has decided — with “hesitation” — to abandon it.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Get those flowers competition ready

Gardeners will come together June 29, for the 22nd Juried Flower Show

Okanagan-Shuswap Weather: Most long-weekend rain has already fallen

A mix of sun and cloud is expected for the last two days of the the Victoria Day weekend.

Councillor trying for Central Okanagan-Similkameen-Nicola riding federal seat

Joan Phillip acclaimed as NDP candidate for Central Okanagan-Similkameen-Nicola

Update: Mother dead, youth in critical condition after carbon monoxide poisoning at Sandy Point Campground

The woman was found unresponsive insider her tent and the youth was taken via air ambulance to hospital

Former Greyhound bus drivers gather in the Okanagan for one last hurrah

Bash kicks off Friday in Penticton and runs until Sunday

Kelowna RCMP interrogation video brings home reality in ‘visceral way’: former TRC chairman

Video of Mountie interrogating young Indigenous woman disclosing sexual abuse under fire

Update: Plan to see more smoke from South Okanagan wildfire

Richter Creek wildfire, 12 kilometres west of Osoyoos, is an estimated 400 hectares

Court decision prompts regional district to throw flood mitigation back at province

Public safety minister maintains Newsome Creek concerns in hands of local government

Woodworth purchased Summerland rink, created butcher operation

Giant’s Head Rink had been one of three facilities in Summerland

Canadian killed in Honduras plane crash

The crash happened in the Roatan Islands area, according to officials

B.C. ferry stops to let black bear swim past near Nanaimo

Queen of Oak Bay brakes for wildlife in Nanaimo’s Departure Bay

Some South Okanagan students are $1,000 richer

Million Dollar Bursary Program offers bursaries each year to Interior Savings’ young members

Okanagan adventurer continues motorcycle trip around the world

Vernon local James Leigh recently completed the third of five legs of the journey, travelling through China and Kazakhstan

Riders “step up” their game at Coldstream Equestrian Clinic

Riders from across the Okanagan travelled to Coldstream to train for the 2019 55+ Senior Games, which take place in Kelowna this fall.

Most Read