EXSHAW – The Municipal District of Bighorn is the latest municipality in the Bow Valley to ban the public consumption of cannabis.
Councillors unanimously passed all three readings of the bylaw in six-and-a-half minutes on Tuesday (Nov. 13).
The bylaw bans smoking, vaping and consuming cannabis in any public place, including in the hamlets of Harvie Heights, Dead Man’s Flats, Lac Des Arcs and Exshaw.
Chief Administrative Officer Martin Buckley said the bylaw closely resembles the same one passed by Calgary earlier this year and comes with a maximum fine of $100.
“I don’t envision there being a lot of enforcement necessary. I think the public will comply just out of general respect,” said Buckley.
The new bylaw does not prohibit the consumption of medical cannabis in public areas, as long as the person possesses a medical document. Cannabis may also be consumed in a public place at an event as long as the municipal district has granted a permit.
Banff and Canmore each passed similar bylaws earlier this fall before Canada legalized the recreational use of cannabis on Oct. 17.
The public consumption of cannabis is also legal in provincial parks and recreation areas, and throughout Banff National Park, so long as it’s consumed outside of the Banff townsite.
That being said, consumption is limited to visitor’s campsites and banned in campground common areas such as playgrounds, kitchen shelters, washrooms, trails and roads.