It is always easier to create a problem than to fix it. That’s because problems are created through thoughtlessness and rash actions. On the other hand, solutions require rational thinking, painstaking planning and careful execution. This is why I have consistently detailed a solution to Lisa Helps’ pot shops while speaking loudly against them. She needs to understand that pot shops will bring outlaw bikers.
Over the last six months, I have blogged relentlessly about the pot shops. They are everywhere in Victoria and are having a detrimental effects on our beautiful little city. As of Monday night, January 18, it appears that Mayor Helps might be hearing your voices and mine. She tweeted me about creating a new pot regulatory regime. Although it seemed like an excuse in many ways as she said, “it takes time to create a whole new regulatory regime!”
@HannonHal. We are in the process of creating a regulatory regime to fix the issue. @CityOfVictoria @victoriavisitor
@HannonHal. We are trying to do what we can, but it takes time to create a whole new regulatory regime!
As with tent city, Lisa Helps’ activist actions are the only reasons need of a “new regulatory regime“. Her pot shops have brought bikers and violence to Victoria. And her tent city has brought U.S. prison gang, Nortenos.
Lisa Helps created this debacle by allowing pot shops and the home invasions and armed robberies they have generated. Without her, Victoria would not be under pressure to develop solutions to deal with the added crime and the sure to come tourism backlash. This is why I accused her of blackmailing the city.
Bikers and other criminals must be removed from the marijuana distribution chain before criminality is removed from distributing marijuana.
There is a way out of this mess which Lisa Helps created. It starts with realizing that you must clean out the old system before you bring in a new one. It starts with understanding, no matter your viewpoint on the future legalization of pot, that all pot shops are run by criminals and supplied by criminal gangs. Here are some simple, yet undeniable, facts.
- All current pot shops are illegal under federal law.
- As all current pot shops are illegal, all people running them are criminals who knowingly entered into criminal activity. To protect their profits, they will continue to flaunt their criminality under the guise of activism.
- No pot shop owners or employees have had criminal background checks by police to determine any other possible criminality.
- All pot shop owners, with the exception of four which Lisa Helps says are licensed to dispense medical advice, are licensed only for the sale of paraphernalia. Thus all are violating their city business license as well as federal law.
- None of the pot shop owners are in the business for altruistic reasons. They have each decided to sell pot in violation of federal laws and in violation of city bylaws in order to make a profit.
- All pot shop owners have been making illegal profits since the day each opened.
- All pot shop owners are buying at least some of their supplies from criminal grow operations, many controlled by motorcycle gangs.
Mayor Helps should not license pot shops. I profoundly disagree with Victoria allowing pot shops in violation of the Criminal Code of Canada. Nevertheless, should she do so, here are some absolute prerequisites for any “regulatory regime”.
- Determine how many shops will be allowed. Then institute strict signage, strict zoning regulations and strict product display regulations.
- Consult with the Downtown Victoria Business Association, the Victoria Police Department and Tourism Victoria in the creation of these regulations.
- Require potential licensees to submit an application to open a pot store. Perhaps have a “license award” process that is done by lottery once any application has been approved for inclusion in that lottery.
- Demand a criminal record check on owners and employees before any submission is allowed for inclusion in the lottery.
- Mandate a yearly followup criminal record check on employees and owners.
- Forbid current pot shop owners or employees from entering that lottery. These owners and employees have already proven that they have zero regard for the federal laws about marijuana. Therefore, there is no reason to believe that they will have any regard for whatever guidelines the City of Victoria might impose. This is especially true since they are already acting outside of the scope of their current business license.
- Create a license agreement with any licensee that establishes the fact that the business license is at the sole discretion of the City of Victoria. and without the right of the licensee to bring legal action, is revocable for what the City of Victoria considers to be any violation of its terms, or in the event that federal legislation is passed that mandates a different distribution system, or in the event that the City of Victoria should at any future date decide on an alternate distribution system
- Impose a list of acceptable suppliers
Frankly, I strongly suspect that the mayor’s tweets to me are nothing more than gamesmanship. She has become for renown that with the tent city she created in addition to the pot shops. Obviously, she has zero plans to do anything about the pot shops other than to pull some political maneuver. She wants them badly enough that she is ignoring the threat of bikers.
There would be no justice in allowing current pot shop owners to continue on with their businesses once a “regulatory regime” is established. Doing so would allow those owners to benefit from their criminality over honest citizens who waited for the laws to change. Additionally, the fact that these illegal businesses would gain a head start on other honest business people has the potential to generate a rash of lawsuits against the City of Victoria. After all, the City of Victoria violated federal laws and city bylaws to create an unfair advantage for a select group of individuals.
Those are my opinions
What are yours?
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