Should a cannabis dispensary be allowed a couple of blocks from British Columbia’s biggest university?
In any other densely populated area in the province, a decision would be made by local politicians, chosen by people who live in the area to represent them on democratic issues.
Because the dispensary is proposed for lands around the University of British Columbia, local voters have little say.
On Thursday, a Metro Vancouver committee for Electoral Area A, comprised of politicians from Langley to Bowen Island, will vote on whether to support the cannabis retail store.
The student union is in favour, but the majority of permanent residents in the area are opposed, including area MLA and Attorney General David Eby, with many citing potential health concerns.
But due to the hodgepodge of legislation governing the area, the decision will fall almost solely to regional politicians.
“This is not about the legalization of cannabis, not about the supply of cannabis,” said Electoral Area A Director Jen McCutcheon, the only directly elected politician chosen by all area residents.
“This really is an example of the lack of governance.”
Jen McCutcheon is the Metro Vancouver Electoral Area A