Indigenous leaders sounding alarm over implications of legal pot regime – CP

Source: The Canadian Press
Dec 12, 2017 13:04

OTTAWA _ A number of Indigenous leaders say they don’t see the prospect of a recreational cannabis regime as a “cash cow,” and fear the black market will set its sights on targeting their vulnerable communities.

Isadore Day, the Ontario regional chief of the Assembly of First Nations, says he and Quebec Regional Chief Ghislain Picard are leading discussions on how First Nations communities will address the impacts of pot legalization.

He says he fears for Indigenous community safety because the federal government is moving so quickly with its plan to legalize pot by July 2018.

Day also calls it embarrassing that Indigenous leaders weren’t invited to take part in Monday’s talks between finance ministers in Ottawa.

Finance Minister Bill Morneau announced a two-year agreement that will see Ottawa give 75 per cent of tax revenues to the provinces and territories while Ottawa retains the remaining 25 per cent, to a maximum of $100 million a year.

Morneau, who originally floated a 50-50 split, says a larger share will allow the provinces and territories to fairly deal with costs and allow for them to work with municipalities, who have also advocated for at least a third of the revenue.


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