HALIFAX -- A Halifax homeowner who lives next door to a private marijuana grow-op is appealing to a municipal councillor for help in dealing with the pungent pot odour.
Coun. Reg Rankin said the man, who he declined to identify, lives in a semi-detached home and shares a wall with a licensed grower of medical marijuana.
"As he describes it, terrible smells permeating through the walls," Rankin said Monday.
Rankin said he's been to the home in his constituency of Timberlea-Beechville-Clayton Park West and the marijuana smell is obvious.
He wants municipal staff to look into how effective laws are that deal with the impacts of licensed grow-ops on neighbouring properties. The motion, to be submitted Tuesday, asks how operations can affect health and property values and "constitute adverse quality of life."
"Enjoyment of property is pretty paramount, isn't it, in society? So doesn't this constitute an infringement on enjoyment of property?" said Rankin.
Health Canada stopped issuing licences for patients to grow their own pot in 2014 in hopes of shifting marijuana production to commercial producers, but a court injunction has allowed small-scale producers already enrolled in the program to continue cultivation.
Under the old system, patients had the option of growing their own marijuana, designating someone else to grow it for them, or ordering the drug directly from Health Canada. About 38,000 people were authorized under the old regime.
RCMP spokeswoman Cpl. Jennifer Clarke said as long as the grower in this case is following federal regulations, there's little that can be done from a policing perspective.
"We would certainly contact Health Canada to confirm whether there was anything that was being contravened there, but there's not a lot we can do," she said.
"The only thing I can think of is something along the lines of interfering with the enjoyment of property, but there has to be some intent."
Cam Battley of the Canadian Medical Cannabis Industry Association, which represents licensed producers, said it's not the first time he's heard of a private grower drawing the ire of a neighbour.
Battley works for Bedrocan, a medical cannabis facility in Toronto. He said the facility uses HEPA air filters so the odour doesn't waft outside.
"There's zero impact on the community and it's set up that way, and that really is best practice," he said. "But for individuals growing in their own home, there's a wide range of what they do. Some are quite professional, some are not."