Council confirms zoning amendment for medical marijuana
New Tecumseth's decision to direct future medical marijuana operations
to industrial zones is already turning into a deterrent for investors.
In an email dated Aug. 11, 2014 to mayor Mike MacEachern, Neil Morgan
of Borden Ladner Gervais LLP, explained he represents a proponent who
is seeking to develop a 40,000 sq. ft facility on farmland "in or near
"A facility of this size will likely bring 20 permanent jobs to the
community along with the temporary employment of local construction
operations to build such a facility," according to Mr. Morgan, who
warned that council's decision to remove the business of medical
marijuana as a permitted use in agricultural zones, will discourage
that type of investment in the municipality, "as it will significantly
raise the costs of building and operating such a facility."
Mr. Morgan did not list his client's name, nor was he able to convince
council to postpone its decision until the fall so he could address the
matter in person.
Prior to the amendment, New Tecumseth's zoning bylaw would have permitted such uses in 'Agriculture,' Urban Industrial (UM), Urban Light Industrial (ULM) and Rural Industrial (RM) Zones.
"Council can look to Maple Ridge, British Columbia as an example of a
municipality that has decided to allow such facilities to operate on
agricultural land. Indeed, the British Columbia Agricultural Land
Commission has determined that such facilities are consistent with the
definition of "farm use."
Ward 5 councillor Donna Jebb said New Tecumseth's farming community was
in favour of the Town's decision.