Council has a report coming from staff that is to guide its members as to whether Sault Ste. Marie should opt out of allowing cannabis stores in the city.
The city through provincial government dictate has until Jan. 22 to decide.
Some councillors have indicated that through their own research they have found limited information about what is involved in allowing cannabis stores in the city and it seems to have bothered them.
Not Ward 3 Coun. Luke Dufour.
He said either way, he’s comfortable deciding with incomplete information.
However, The Sault Star story that quoted him didn’t give any indication which way that would be.
I would think that common sense would dictate that his vote would be for allowing cannabis stores to be set up within the city.
After all, they are a legal entity. If we can have liquor, beer and tobacco sales, surely we can have cannabis sales.
And Prince Township has already decided not to opt out. Would councillors actually consider having citizens of Sault Ste. Marie travel just outside city limits to buy their weed?.
That kind of thing takes me back to the 1950s in Alberta when mixed drinking could only be found in Canmore outside Calgary and St. Albert outside Edmonton..
Undoubtedly there are those who are against the sale of recreational cannabis, just as there are those who are against other things, such as same-sex marriage.
But when something has been declared legal, as the possession and use of recreational marijuana has been, we have to go with the flow.
As cannabis will be available to Sault residents whether the city opts in or out and that property will either be built or rented and jobs created, to me it would make no sense to do otherwise.
Over the past few weeks I have been writing about the failed attempts by local lawyer Don Orazietti to get bail for a client who has been charged with breach of recognizance.
John Seamus Fyfe, whom I have not named previously, was released on bail by Justice of the Peace J.A. Guitard, who is a lawyer, on Nov..2 in respect to a series of drug charges under the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act.
One of the conditions of his bail was that he not be out of his residence without his surety, Michelle Bolland, but on Dec.6 he was arrested while sitting alone in a vehicle in the Canadian Tire parking lot.
Boland had stopped to use a washroom and when she approached the arresting officer apparently her explanation fell on deaf ears.
“At best this is a questionable violation of the order and shows that this city has too many police officers with nothing to do,” Orazietti said in a letter of complaint to Caroline Mulroney, Ontario Attorney General.
The arrest for the recognizance breach took place on Dec. 6. A month later Fyfe is still in jail, his lengthy incarceration seemingly more in line with that for a dangerous criminal than for someone breaching recognizance.
Justice of the Peace Kathleen Bryant, who Orazietti points out does not have a lawyer background as Guitard does, has adjourned Fyfe’s case for another two weeks, to Jan. 17/19, which Orazietti says is to allow the Crown to provide disclosure.
Orazietti said Fyfe is appealing the bail detention order.
“His bail appeal is in Superior Court, hopefully next Wednesday. Jan.10,” he said. “When a person is detained the Criminal Code says he or she is entitled to a bail review upon giving two clear days notice to the prosecution.”
Orazietti says his client has absolutely no record for violence and is a very high functioning individual.
I am not sure why the federal and provincial Crowns are pursuing Fyfe so vigorously. It does seem that this is overkill, that there would be more important things for them to spend their time on.
I know it has taken on legs of its own for Orazietti, who is using it to further his belief that justices of the peace who are going to hear such cases should be lawyers.
It is a belief I doubt any who aren’t justices of the peace now or who want to become one would quarrel with.
In any event, my intent here is mainly to keep you abreast of what is happening to Fyfe, considering I placed it before you in the first place, Orazietti having copied Kirk Makin of The Globe and Mail, the legal affairs department of The Toronto Star and myself at saultonline..
Doug Millroy can be reached at [email protected].