Osoyoos is one step closer to having its first retail cannabis shop — and a second might literally be just around the corner.
Council gave third reading Monday to a zoning amendment bylaw that would allow for a site specific retail cannabis store to be located at 8304 72nd Ave — the former site of Osoyoos Signs.
In the same meeting, Council gave two readings to a similar site-specific zoning amendment that would put a second shop at 8322 Main Street.
It also provided direction to administration to establish an interim annual business licencing fee for such shops at $500.
“That’s awesome,” said applicant Richard Stagg, when contacted about Council’s decision. “We we’re hoping that we would have support from the community.”
The Town’s planning department has established the practice of asking Council to give two readings to a cannabis-related zoning change request, but holding off a third reading until the Town receives a referral from the provincial government.
Provincial legislation requires the provincial Liquor and Cannabis Regulation Branch (LCRB) to provide notice of an application to the local government or Indigenous nation.
Mr. Stagg confirmed the OG Canna shop has its provincial referral and he expected to start the store’s buildout next week.
“This thing needs a full exterior and interior renovation, so it’s a big cost,” he said.
Helping with the finances was Council’s decision to set the initial business licencing fee at $500.
“That’s very nice because I thought it would be a heck of a lot more,” he said. “I thought it would probably be around the $3,500 to $5,000 range.”
OG Canna is also close to opening a second Oliver location and has “two other locations that we’re working on right now,” Mr. Stagg said.
Prior to making any changes to the exterior of the building, OG Canna is required to apply for and obtain a development permit for form and character, Ms MacKay told Council.
“The applicant will also need to comply with any additional requirements as may be required through the business licence program,” she said, later adding that “no business licences can be issued until an amendment to the bylaw has been completed.”
That amendment is expected in mid-January.
Another shop on Main Street?
Osoyoos Council also gave first and second readings to a second zoning amendment bylaw that would allow for cannabis sales at a second shop — this one located at 8322 Main St.
“You’ll notice that there’s going to be quite a similarity between any reports that we receive on this issue so that they’re all looked at through the same eyes,” Gina MacKay, the Town’s Director of Planning and Development, told Council before starting her report.
The building was most recently used as a BC Elections office during the 2017 provincial election.
The application was brought by Jana-Michelle Howardson, a director with Maple Leaf Greenery, Ltd., a town report shows.
“Staff is of the opinion that this location is suitable for the proposed use and will enable a new business to be established in the Town of Osoyoos,” Ms. MacKay told Council.
A January 19 public hearing was set to receive public comment on the zoning change.