Kathleen Ganley, Minister of Justice and Solicitor General, issued the following statement today after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced Oct. 17, 2018 as the formal date for cannabis legalization:
“The Alberta government is ready to manage legalized cannabis in a way that protects Albertans and promotes public health.
“Today’s announcement confirming Oct. 17, 2018 as the official date of legalization means our province has the clarity it needs to move forward.
“Over the past 15 months, our government has built a system for legalized cannabis focused on keeping cannabis out of the hands of children, keeping profits away from criminals and protecting Alberta’s roads, workplaces and public spaces.
“Today’s federal announcement means the Alberta Gaming and Liquor Commission (AGLC) may begin the transitional work necessary to prepare for legalization. This includes finalizing contracts with suppliers, stocking cannabis and selling and delivering cannabis to retail outlets.
“The AGLC will also issue conditional licences to approved licensees, who may begin preparing their stores to open, but will not be allowed to sell any products until legalization on Oct. 17. It will continue to be illegal for Albertans to buy or possess cannabis until that day.
“Once cannabis is legal across the country in 17 weeks, our work will not be over. Our government will be watching closely to ensure our legal cannabis system is working, and we will make changes as necessary.
“I want to thank the tens of thousands of Albertans who provided feedback over the last 15 months. Your input and expertise were essential in guiding our efforts to build a system that, at its core, prioritizes the health and safety of all Albertans.”