Cannabis ‘backup plan’ in the works if provinces unable to regulate by deadline, Morneau says

The federal government is preparing a backup plan that would see it regulate the distribution and taxation of legal marijuana in provinces that are not ready in time for Ottawa’s July, 2018, deadline.

Federal Finance Minister Bill Morneau outlined the plan Monday following a two-day meeting with his provincial and territorial counterparts. Some provinces are expressing concern with the federal government’s deadline for legalization, given that important details, such as how the products will be taxed, have yet to be worked out.

Speaking with reporters, Mr. Morneau said a backup plan will be in place that would see Ottawa regulate a legal cannabis market based on mail delivery in provinces that have not yet established a regime to regulate sales at the retail level.

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