Nine businesses apply to start pot-production facilities in Maple Ridge, Canada

A worker walks on the site of greenhouses under construction in Maple Ridge, B.C. Owners of the greenhouse have applied to Health Canada to grow medical marijuana at the facility.
(DARRYL DYCK For The Globe and Mail)

When Craig Speirs was first elected as a councillor in the quasi-rural community of Maple Ridge five terms ago, marijuana was a minor issue the police dealt with.

Now, Mr. Speirs and his fellow councillors have nine well-capitalized businesses applying to start marijuana-production facilities in their city. Two are already in operation, even though they do not have Health Canada permits and are technically illegal.

And the Maple Ridge council, like that of many others in cities and villages around the province, has been forced to grapple with the issue.

“It’s a visceral shift the last five years,” Mr. Speirs said. “There’s a lot more acceptance, a lot more wanting to understand...

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