Lacombe bylaw proposes banning cannabis consumption in public places

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ALBERTA -- City council in Lacombe has given first reading to the community’s first smoking bylaw, one with heavy restrictions on where tobacco and cannabis can be consumed in public.

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The proposed bylaw prohibits cannabis smoking, vaping or consumption in any public place – including parks, trails and playgrounds – as well as private property frequented by residents (business or mall parking lots, for example).

Tobacco smoking would be allowed in parking lots provided a person is at least 10 metres from any doorway.

The City of Lacombe created a Cannabis Readiness Committee to prepare for the legalization of recreational marijuana in Canada, now scheduled for Oct. 17. Recommendations from this committee comprised of City staff, councillors, the police chief, FCSS and Chamber of Commerce representatives were incorporated into the proposed smoking bylaw.

If the bylaw is passed, the City of Lacombe would spend $5,400 to install 155 signs throughout the community to notify residents of the changes.

"The Smoking Bylaw will ensure that all citizens are able to enjoy City facilities and public spaces without undue harm from  second hand smoke," read Monday's agenda item summary to council. 

The smoking bylaw is scheduled to return to council at its Aug. 13 meeting.

The Town of Sylvan Lake is also working on a a bylaw banning cannabis consumption in public places. Council gave second reading Monday night with third reading expected to happen in October.

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