On July 3, 2019, the federal government of Ontario introduced plans to open 50 new cannabis retail shops throughout Ontario. The Alcohol and Gaming Fee of Ontario (AGCO) will maintain a lottery on August 20, 2019 for 42 of the places. The remaining eight shops will likely be allotted on a primary come, first served foundation to First Nations Reserves which have obtained Band Council approval in a course of separate from the lottery.
The announcement comes after the Ontario Minister of Finance, Vic Fedeli, offered the 2019/20 provincial price range final April providing an perception right into a pre-qualification course of that may permit the federal government of Ontario to take a “market-oriented method, which is able to permit private-sector enterprise to construct a protected and handy retail system to fight the unlawful market.”
The pre-qualification standards set within the new iteration of the lottery contains three new necessities that weren’t a part of the primary lottery:
- Proof of economic capability within the type of a letter from a financial institution or credit score union indicating that the applicant has the capability to acquire $250,00Zero in money or money equivalents
- Proof that, if chosen, an applicant will be capable to present a standby letter of credit score from a financial institution or credit score union within the quantity of $50,000
- Proof of getting secured appropriate retail house assembly all AGCO necessities that will likely be out there for the operation of a cannabis retail location as of October 2019
events and their associates will be capable to submit as much as one (1) Expression of Curiosity (EOI) per area to enter the lottery course of between August 7th 12:01 AM EDT and August 9th 8:00 PM EDT. Every EOI may have a non-refundable $75 charge. The 42 shops have been allotted per area as follows:
- East Area: 7 shops
- GTA Area: 6 shops
- Toronto Area: 13 shops
- West Area: 11 shops
- North Area: 5 shops, one (1) in every of Kenora, North Bay, Sault Ste. Marie, Thunder Bay and Timmins
For the North area, candidates will solely be capable to submit an EOI for one of many 5 cities listed above.
The AGCO has supplied additional data on events that will likely be ineligible to submit EOI for the lottery course of which is able to embody present holders of an Ontario Retail Retailer Authorization (RSA), holders of a cultivation, processing or nursery license issued by Well being Canada beneath the Hashish Act, and those that are making use of for one of many eight places on a First Nations reserve. Earlier than conducting the lottery, the AGCO will display all candidates to make sure compliance with all regulatory and lottery guidelines and necessities and can disqualify ineligible candidates.
After the draw on August 20th, the AGCO will notify chosen candidates (Aug. 21-28) who may have 5 (5) days to submit the suitable purposes and types together with:
- $50,00Zero standby letter of credit score
- Lease, sublease or proof of possession of chosen retail location
- A Retail Operator License (ROL) utility and its related $6,00Zero charge
- A Retail Retailer Authorization (RSA) utility and its related $4,00Zero charge
The AGCO has indicated they may draw the standby letter of credit score in full for chosen candidates disqualified from the appliance course of if the registrar determines that the applicant has not met the necessities of the rules or the lottery guidelines. If a specific applicant is disqualified, a waitlisted applicant will transfer to the chosen checklist and will likely be notified of their eligibility to submit the suitable purposes and paperwork to enter the appliance course of.
These 50 new shops will add to the prevailing 25 shops allotted all through Ontario within the first lottery (of which 22 have obtained Retail Retailer Authorizations thus far), with the AGCO intending for the brand new shops to be working beginning in October as they turn out to be prepared. Entry to authorized cannabis stays an vital side of the legalization of cannabis and we anticipate that further retailer allocations will open in 2020 as the availability of cannabis stabilizes.
CCI has navigated each the EOI/lottery and ROL/RSA utility processes. Brampton lottery winner Clint Seukeran labored with our CCI Specialists on his retail utility and he efficiently opened his retail retailer on April 1, 2019 in accordance with first spherical lottery guidelines.
In case you are concerned with submitting your EOI, or require Enterprise Planning for the monetary issues required, contact us to see how we may help you achieve success!