Mayor wants slice of pot pie

Marijuana buds.

Mayor Greg Dionne is joining the chorus of Saskatchewan mayors calling for marijuana revenue to be shared with municipalities.

“We know the government is doing this to create revenue,” Dionne said. “We believe it’s prudent that they share that revenue with us. Because, at the end of the day, who does the enforcement of the laws that they make? Our local police and our local people. So we should be compensated for that.”

Charlie Clark of Saskatoon and Michael Fougere of Regina have already floated similar ideas. The money, Clark is reported as saying, could come from a direct tax on marijuana sales or another form of revenue sharing.

The federal government has indicated it wants to make pot legal by July of next year. It would be up to provinces to craft a regulatory system. Depending on the nature of the system, Dionne said, revenue could flow through Ottawa or Regina. But wherever it goes, the mayor wants it to come back to Prince Albert.

“I’m even more vocal than Charlie,” Dionne said. “He wants to share the revenue, but I also want them to pay for some of the expenses.”

For more on this story, see the July 21 edition of the Daily Herald.