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Constable Gohn defines a public space as any real property or portions of real property owned by the City of Fort St. John, to which the public is ordinarily invited or permitted to be in on, which also includes grounds of public facilities.

During his presentation, Gohn continuously made reference to the city of Kelowna, B.C. and how it enforces this same bylaw. He said the results for imposing such a law could be financially beneficial to the City.

Under the proposed law, anyone caught in possession with drug paraphernalia would face a fine of $100. If paid within 14 days, that fine would decrease to $90, and after 28 days would increase to $110.

Constable Gohn defined paraphernalia as an item used for the purpose of storing, transporting or using illegal drugs. Owning such paraphernalia is technically legal, however penalties would be enforced if such items contain residue produced from illegal drugs.

Following the presentation, Mayor Lori Ackerman said she’s not sure how effective the proposed bylaw is, questioning the exact definition of paraphernalia. She said the City has to make sure they have the right intentions in mind when voting on this new bylaw, but Council will consider the presentation when moving forward with their decision.

Council will consider all the facts made clear during the presentation by Constable Gohn and will make their decision at a future meeting.


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