The federal government has been standing behind a July 2018 date for the official legalisation of recreational cannabis across Canada. Unfortunately, it looks like that date is going to be delayed. However, the good news is: there is progress.
The Senate has agreed to a legislative timetable that culminates in a final vote on Bill C-45 (the recreational cannabis legislation) on or before June 7. The deadline for the vote is a big step.
Sen. Peter Harder, the Government Representative in the Senate had this to say, “this should give stakeholders, governments, businesses, law enforcement agencies and other Canadians a timeline for how and when the bill will be ultimately dealt with by the Upper Chamber.”
The issue with the July deadline is the federal government has not left enough time for provinces and territories to prepare. Provincial governments have been clear that they would require eight to twelve months between the final vote and implementation.
Though not official, it looks pretty unrealistic that the country will be prepared to implement the legislation by the July date and may even miss summer 2018. Although, since the bill has been in Senate since November, it is positive to see some movement.