New Otter Point pot dispensary at risk of closure: RCMP

CRD leaves future of store in hands of RCMP

A new cannabis shop that opened in Otter Point is in danger of closure before it even gets its feet off the ground, says Sooke RCMP.

High Tide Cannabis opened on Sunday, and operates at the former Kemp Lake Cafe location.

The store offers “craft cannabis,” working with local growers on the Island, as well as growing its own.

Owner, Robert (who didn’t want his last name used) said he has a grower’s licence for four years, and once owned a pot dispensary in Victoria.

High Tide carries a multitude of different products, including both indica and sativa strains of buds, shatters, oils, capsules, bath bombs, pipes, pet products and more.

Robert said they are the furthest west cannabis store in Canada, but this could put them at risk of closure.

“I guess we will just have to cross that bridge if and when we come to it,” Robert said.

Unlike the dispensaries in Sooke, the store doesn’t have a business license because it operates within the Capital Regional District electoral area, and a business licence isn’t required.

“We are aware of the dispensary, and they are subject to being shut down,” said RCMP Staff Sgt. Jeff McArthur. “The ones in Sooke have business licenses and are operating kind of with the support of the district, so we are allowing them to exist.”

He said the current rules require local dispensaries not to have any connection between their stores and organized crime, only to sell to people over the age of 19, not to sell any quantities that are considered more than acceptable for personal use, and to not cause problems in the community.

“We keep an eye on the dispensaries, and I think that all three of the businesses in Sooke have been operating within the parameters we’ve set for them,” McArthur said.

He said the RCMP is planning to reach out to High Tide and see what’s going on at the business before they decide whether it can stay open.

“The dispensary in Otter Point is not operating with the support of the regional director, he’s left it up to us. So we are going to look further in to it, talk to the neighbours and make a decision accordingly,” McArthur said.

“If they are operating within our rules and people in the immediate area are OK with it, it’s possible we will let them go. If not, it’s possible we’ll shut them down.”

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