Agenda Notes: Cannabis, and Committees

Council debates 2019 municipal budget

By: Laura Steiner

Milton Council meets tonight at 7 p.m.  Among the items on the agenda are committee structure, and the cannabis retail locations.

Committee structure:

Town Staff has conducted a regular review of all the various, citizens’ committee.  They are recommending that the Heritage committee be slashed because of the increased reliance on a staff member, and the increased public engagement opportunities. One thing people love about Milton is the historic downtown.   Preserving the downtown was a question in one of the ward debates during the recent 2018 municipal election. Expect a few delegations with this one.   How does Milton have identity if you don’t preserve the past?

The other notable change is disbanding the Seniors Advisory committee.  Demographics indicate Milton is bucking a trend by getting younger, with the average age of 34.  But who is more heavily engaged in their community than seniors? Not all are proficient with technology.

Cannabis retail locations:

Staff recommends voting against bringing bricks and mortar retail locations to Milton.   Reading the report, there is a valid reason for opposing it.  The province wants these locations zoned as any other retail outlets would be.  It changes the question from should you have the locations, to how should the product be treated?  The same as cigarettes/ alcohol where there is an enforced age for purchase, consumption, and storage?  Or as any other product sold? There are ramifications for agricultural zoning as well.

The money could be hard to turn down.  Should Ontario’s portion of a federal excise tax exceed $100 million in the first two years, the province is expected to share 50% of the surplus with municipalities.  Early indications are this could end up being the case.   Delegations are likely with this item.

Can’t make it tonight? Watch the meeting on the town’s website, or follow along on Twitter @MiltonReporter