Professional Help for the Ontario Cannabis Retail Sales License Application

ontario cannabis retail sales license application

As of todays date August 6th, if you are looking to apply for an Ontario Cannabis Retail Sales License you will have to be strategic.  When it is announced you want to have your application completed by an expert, so that you can hit the road running, and avoid unnecessary delays or rejection of your application due to technical errors or deficiencies. Assuming that the Ford P.C. government allows private retailers to sell cannabis, a whole new licensing regime has got to be set up to give the ability to sell cannabis like we sell alcohol and or tobacco. However, Ford’s announcement to give private retailers licenses to sell cannabis was made in the months before his government was formed and took office. Before the election Ford was strongly in favour of private cannabis retail sales.  On June 29th,  Ford and the Progressive Conservative party took office, and herein to date when asked about access to cannabis private retail licenses, Ford replies with the statement that “this is a new road that we’ve never gone down and we have to protect the children”.

Only 10 weeks are left before the start of legal sales of recreational cannabis and still the main questions remain to be answered.  How will the sales of recreational cannabis be instituted and when can I make my license application? There will certainly be a lot of competition for a limited number of licenses. A professional expert in liquor license applications through years of experience in dealing with the AGCO will give you a head start in the race to get a cannabis license application approved. Sean O’Connor  is a qualified paralegal with 15 years experience in successful applications to the AGOC. He can be contacted at TEL: 416-835-7411

The Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario, the AGCO, currently administers alcohol and lottery & gaming (including horse racing) to private individuals through licenses. The LCBO stores are administered by the LCBO (Liquor Control Board of Ontario), which is a crown corporation that retails and distributes alcoholic beverages. It is accountable to the Ministry of Finance. The Ministry of Finance administers and regulates the licensing of tobacco retailers. Recently, questions to the Ontario Cannabis Store’s retail arm (the Ontario Cannabis Retail Corp) and the LCBO were referred to the Ministry of Finance to whom they are fully accountable.

Putting tobacco and the Ministry of Finance aside, the prevailing school of thought is that it will be the AGCO that will administer the licensing of private cannabis retailers. This will be the case if it is done in a hybrid for example like BC or the Yukon with its transitional model from public to private distribution or solely a private model like in Alberta. One way or the other, the ways by which a private retailer can successfully make application for a retail cannabis license is by being proactive and first out the gate. Contact Sean O’Connor at TEL: 416-835-7411 to arrange your cannabis retail license application consultation.

What Are Other Provinces in Canada Doing?

  • BRITISH COLUMBIA is going to have a Hybrid model whereby they will have both private and government sales of recreational cannabis
  • ALBERTA, SAKATCHEWAN, MANITOBA will have solely private retail sales of recreational cannabis
  • ONTARIO is currently going to have government sales of recreational cannabis but private retail sales of cannabis is under discussion
  • QUEBEC, NEW BRUNSWICK, NOVA SCOTIA & PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND are going to have government sales of recreational cannabis only
  • NEWFOUNDLAND will have privately licensed only sales of recreational cannabis
  • THE YUKON will initially have government sales only but will transition into private retail sales licenses sometime after
  • NORTHWEST TERRITORIES, NUNUVUT will have government sales of recreational cannabis

 

BREAKING NEWS, August 13th 2018

Doug Ford’s Ontario government announced that no LCBO government-run Ontario Cannabis Stores (OCS) will exist on October 17th. This will ensure no government monopoly in recreational cannabis.  Instead, private retail bricks and mortar stores will be licensed to sell cannabis under tightly regulated rules that will be legislated into law next year and put into action on April 1st  2019.

From October 17th 2018 to then, recreational cannabis will be sold through the government–run (OCS) Ontario Cannabis Store Website. This will allow government the time to transition into private retail sales with the benefit of consultations with the municipalities and law-enforcement, so as to ensure effective regulations of safe and reliable private sector businesses that will steer sales away from the illegal market.

In the meantime, beginning October 17th the (OCS) Ontario Cannabis Stores Website will be the sole Ontario consumer outlet for safe, cost competitive and legal recreational cannabis. Eventually its role will expand and private retail outlets will emerge next year to break that monopoly. The Ontario Cannabis store will become a wholesaler to the private sector retailers selling government approved recreational Cannabis. To help consumers identify the legitimate licensed retailers in the province, the Government has created the Ontario Cannabis Seal, which is a navy blue shield with the words Ontario Licensed above a white trillium logo.

Ontario Minister of Finance Vic Fedeli said  “ This pause in implementation is important” and although this model is like that of the Yukon, Fedeli said “ the extra time would also give the province time to learn from other provinces that have embraced a private model, like Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and Alberta.’

Although April 1st 2019 seems a long-time away now, in actuality it isn’t. There is roughly seven months to complete the government consultations with municipalities and law-enforcement, create the entirely new legislated licensing regime and then complete the vetting and issuing of the retail license applications. Get the support you need to get ahead of the game with expert knowledge and experience. Contact Sean O’Connor at TEL: 416-835-7411 for a free consultaion.

 

References

 

  1. https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/ontario-marijuana-cannabis-sales-doug-ford-1.4713848

 

  1. https://www.bnnbloomberg.ca/the-yukon-model-how-doug-ford-can-bring-the-free-market-to-cannabis-retail-1.1107678

 

  1. https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/privatized-marijuana-city-questions-1.4771630

 

  1. http://www.marijuanalaws.ca/canada-retail-on-sales.html

 

  1. https://www-cbc-ca.cdn.ampproject.org/v/s/www.cbc.ca/amp/1.4763921?amp_js_v=0.1&usqp=mq331AQGCAEoATgA#origin=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.google.ca&prerenderSize=1&visibilityState=prerender&paddingTop=54&p2r=0&horizontalScrolling=0&csi=1&aoh=15333182313616&viewerUrl=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.google.ca%2Famp%2Fs%2Fwww.cbc.ca%2Famp%2F1.4763921&history=1&storage=1&cid=1&cap=swipe%2CnavigateTo%2Ccid%2Cfragment%2CreplaceUrl

 

  1. https://www.thestar.com/news/cannabis/2018/07/27/late-switch-to-private-sector-pot-sales-could-be-a-scramble-experts-say.html

 

  1. https://agco.ca/sites/default/files/17_18-19_20_business_plan_mar_2017_en.pdf

 

  1. https://indicaonline.com/blog/ontario-shifting-to-private-cannabis-retailers-for-adult-use/

 

  1. http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/how-effective-vancouver-s-licensing-bylaws-1.4632030

 

  1. https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/from-marijuana-beer-to-pot-cookies-canadian-companies-creating-cannabis-edibles-1.4710308