Cannabis Production Facilities

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***UPDATE: On August 19, 2020, Council approved the proposed Cannabis Production Facility Zoning By-law Amendment but did not pass by-law. The passing of the by-law is subject to a revision regarding setback requirements for outdoor cultivation and receiving comment on the by-law from the Georgina Agricultural Advisory Committee. Staff have made the necessary changes to the zoning by-law amendment and will be presenting it to the Georgina Agricultural Advisory Committee in September. Staff will then assess the comments received from the Georgina Agricultural Advisory Committee and report to Council as necessary.

At this time, the Interim Control by-law preventing the cultivation of cannabis in the Rural (RU) zone is still in force and effect. As per Council Resolution, the Interim Control By-law will be repealed at such time as the cannabis production facility zoning by-law comes into force and effect.**

This webpage contains information related to Cannabis Production Facilities and the Planning process being undertaken by the Town to implement zoning standards for these facilites.  For information related to cannabis consumption and cannabis retail stores in Georgina, visit the Cannabis in Georgina webpage.

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Growing Cannabis in Georgina

Currently, cannabis may be grown in Georgina in the following ways:

  1. Any resident of legal age (19 years old and older) may grow up to four cannabis plants per household (not per person);
  2. Within the Rural (RU) zone, a resident of the land who holds a valid registration certificate issued by Health Canada may grow cannabis plants for their personal medical use in accordance with their registration certificate; and,
  3. Within the Business Park 3 (BP-3) zone, cannabis may be grown as part of a Marihuana Production Facility use.
Proposed Approach to Regulate Cannabis Production Facilities

The Town of Georgina is proposing to amend Zoning By-law 500 to implement zoning requirements for Cannabis Production Facilities. The purpose of the Zoning By-law Amendment is to regulate the permitted location and zoning standards for Designated and Licensed Cannabis Production Facilities, as will be defined within the by-law. The amendment generaly proposes to:

  • Define types of Cannabis Production Facilties;
  • Permit Cannabis Production Facilities within the Rural (RU), Restricted Industrial (M1), General Industrial (M2), and Business Park 3 (BP-3) Zones;
  • Implement specific zoning requirements for Cannabis Production Facilities based on type of Cannabis Production Facility and the zone in which they are located; and,
  • Delete the existing definition of 'Marihuana Production Facility' and related requirements currently contained in Zoning By-law 500.

It is also proposed that all Cannabis Production Facilities be required to obtain site plan control approval prior to receiving a building permit for the construction of a new facility or an addition to an existing facility. Council has directed Planning staff to work with Development Engineering to make the necessary changes to the Site Plan Control By-law through the review of the Site Plan Control By-law which is currently underway.

Zoning By-law Amendment

The Cannabis Production Facilities Zoning By-law Amendment is provided which incorporates the revision to the outdoor cultivation setback requirement as discussed at the August 19, 2020 Statutory Meeting.

Interim Control By-law

Currently, an Interim Control By-law is in place which prohibits the growing of cannabis on land which is zoned Rural (RU) and on any lands having a site-specific RU zoning.

This restriction does not include the growing of cannabis within the RU zone for the personal use of a resident of the land, building or structure. For the purpose of this By-law, personal cultivation of cannabis includes: 1) a resident of the land who grows up to four cannabis plants per household (not per person); and 2) a resident of the land who grows cannabis plants for their own medical purpose in accordance with a valid registration certificate issued by Health Canada.

The purpose of the Interim Control By-law is to prohibit Cannabis Production Facilities from establishing within the RU zone while the Town conducts a land use planning study on these facilities in order to implement zoning requirements for them. The Interim Control By-law is scheduled to expire on January 16, 2021. However, the expiration date of the Interim Control By-law has been impacted by Ontario Regulation 149/20, which has extended the timeframe of the By-law until April 23, 2021. 

Who Regulates Cannabis Production Facilities?

Health Canada is the government agency responsible for regulating and licensing cannabis production within Canada in accordance with the Cannabis Act and Regulations.

Municipalities may regulate the location and site requirements for Cannabis Production Facilities through the use of their zoning by-law.  In the Town of Georgina's case, Zoning By-law 500 is the Town's comprehensive zoning by-law which applies to all development within the Town.

Cannabis Production Facilities are also required to comply with applicable Provincial Acts and Regulations such as the Ontario Building Code and the Ontario Fire Code.

The Cannabis Act and Regulations

The Cannabis Act and Regulations came into force on October 17, 2018. The Act and its Regulations provide a legal and licensing framework for the production, cultivation, processing, testing, packaging, labelling, delivery, trasportation, sale, possession or disposal, importation and exportation of medical and recreational cannabis.

Staff Reports, Presentations and Council Resolutions

The information below has been organized in chronological order with the most recent information provided at the top of this section.

August 19, 2020

A Statutory Public Meeting was held to consider a proposed Zoning By-law Amendment for Cannabis Production Facilities. After considering the report, presentation and comments from the public, Council apporved the zoning by-law amendment but did not pass the by-law.  The passing of the by-law is subject to a revision regarding setback requirements for outdoor cultivation and receiving comment on the by-law from the Georgina Agricultural Advisory Committee.

Council Resolution not currently available.

Staff Presentation

Staff Report DS-2020-0028

December 11, 2019

A Draft Zoning By-law Amendment for Cannabis Production Facilities was presented to Council in order to receive feedback and direction on proceeding with a Town initiated Zoning By-law Amendment. After considering the report and presentation, Council directed staff to initiate a general Zoning By-law Amendment as it relates to Cannabis Production Facilities.

Council Resolution No. C-2019-0733

Staff Presentation

Staff Report - DS-2019-0149

November 20, 2019

A By-law was passed to extend the period of interim control relating to the prohibition on cultivating cannabis in the Rural (RU) Zone and on any lands having a site-specific RU zoning. As a result, the Interim Control By-law now expires on January 16, 2021.

By-law 2019-0106 (PL-3)

September 18, 2019

A Cannabis Production Facilities Land Use Planning Study was presented to Council. The purpose of this report was to provide Council with background information, research and a policy review as it relates to cannabis legislation and Cannabis Production Facilities from a land use planning perspective, and to recommend a preferred planning approach to regulate Cannabis Production Facilities within the Town through the use of zoning and site plan control. After considering the report and presentation, Council directed staff to prepare a draft Zoning By-law Amendment for Cannabis Production Facilities for Council's review, and that staff report back to Council on December 11, 2019, or earlier.

Council Resolution No. C-2019-0494

Staff Presentation

Staff Report DS-2019-0100

January 16, 2019

A proposed Interim Control By-law to prohibit cannabis cultivation in the Rural (RU) Zone was presented to Council. The purpose of this report was to provide Council with an Interim Control By-law for consideration and passing which would prohibit the cultivation of cannabis in the RU Zone and on any lands having a site-specific RU zoning for a period of one (1) year, to allow the Town to conduct a land use planning study with the goal of creating and implementing zoning requirements for Cannabis Production Facilities. After considering the report and draft by-law, Council passed the Interim Control By-law and directed staff to undertake a land use planning study respecting Cannabis Production Faciities.

By-law No. 2019-0003 (PL-3)

Council Resolution No. C-2019-0020

Staff Report - DS-2019-0006

December 12, 2018

A General Cannabis Information Report was presented to Council. The purpose of this report was to provide Council with background information relating to the municipalities ability to "opt-in" or "opt-out" of having recreational cannabis retail sales from brick and mortar buildings within the Town, requirements relating to consumption of cannabis on Town properties, and land use planning/zoning considerations with respect to Cannabis Production Facilities.

Council Resolution No. C-2018-0538

Staff Report COA-2018-0021

Staff Contact / Project Mailing List

To speak with someone at the Town regarding this project or to be put on a project mailing list, contact:

Tolek Makarewicz, MCIP, RPP

Senior Policy Planner

Development Services Department

905-476-4301 ext. 2297

tmakarewicz@georgina.ca