Jorge Barrera penned the following piece for the Canadian Broadcasting Corp that illustrates lack of forethought by state and federal politicians and govt bodies that will create problems in the market for another generation if tobacco is to be used as a test case. Once again first nations are spelling out the issues and red lighting future problems but it appears that not many are paying attention
First Nations chiefs on Wednesday called on the federal government to amend its marijuana legalization legislation to prevent provincial regulations from applying on reserves.
Chiefs passed a resolution at a Special Chiefs Assembly in Gatineau, Que., directing the Assembly of First Nations to lobby the federal government to make the amendment to Bill C-45, which is currently before the Senate.
The resolution also called for First Nations to be included in the excise tax revenue sharing framework, which is currently split 75 per cent to 25 per cent between the provinces/territories and Ottawa.
“The federal and provincial governments must recognize and respect First Nations sovereignty and jurisdiction over their reserves and traditional territories,” the resolution says.
Ottawa’s failure to include First Nations in its initial plans to legalize marijuana and cutting them out of the tax revenue split created jurisdictional confusion and undercut business opportunities, while setting the stage for a repeat of the decades-long war over untaxed tobacco, chiefs said.