West Kelowna moves to courts to shut down pot dispensaries

West Kelowna is the latest B.C. city to petition the court to stop medical cannabis dispensaries

West Kelowna is the latest B.C. city to petition the court to stop cannabis dispensaries from doing business.

The city is alleging that the Black Crow Herbals Association, Okanagan Cannabis Solutions Society, Selina Lau, Ralph Krehbiel and Matthew Nicholas are operating without business licenses and it is petitioning the court for an order to stop them from continuing to do so.

In the petition to the court, it says once the order is issued, the RCMP would be given the ability to arrest and remove any person who is contravening any provision of this order within the properties listed.

None of the parties named in the petition were willing to comment. Nor was the city.

Dispensaries operating within the city are currently being fined $1,000 a day for remaining open without a business licence—they were issued a letter explaining as much Oct. 16, according to the petition.

West Kelowna Mayor Doug Findlater said earlier this week that city staff would be looking into further measures aimed at stopping the dispensaries from staying open, though he wouldn’t say what they were at that point.

He also said that a letter sent to dispensaries earlier in the week from the RCMP asking for compliance, lest they face arrest, had not come from them. West Kelowna said local Mounties are following moves by cops in other areas such as Grand Forks and Merritt, he said.

At that time Lau said she felt the police response was “ridiculous.”

“We are not going to abandon our patients, we are going to be here for our patients,” she said.

Lau also has an operation in Vernon, which she said hasn’t been a problem.

“Vernon city council has been giving everyone temporary-use permits,” she said.

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