Nothing hazy about results from Sudbury's online cannabis survey

The deadline is looming for Ontario municipalities to decide whether they want to opt in or opt out of retail cannabis stores.

More than 80 per cent of respondents give thumbs up to allowing cannabis store in city

Storefront of marijuana store on Robson Street in Vancouver. Municipalities in Ontario will have until January 22 to opt in to allowing private cannabis stores. (David Horemans/CBC)

The deadline is looming for Ontario municipalities to decide whether they want to opt in or opt out of retail cannabis stores.

Currently, the only place people can purchase recreational marijuana legally is online through the Ontario Cannabis Store.

Private retail will be legal starting April 1, 2019. Municipalities have until Jan. 22 to opt out, but can subsequently opt back in at any time.

In an effort to gauge the level of interest of people in Sudbury, the city offered residents a chance to voice their concerns through an online survey.

Kevin Fowke,  the general manager of corporate services with the city, said the poll brought in the largest response they've ever had on-line.

"We've had about 10,000 responses by 6,500 roughly unique contributors that effectively shows us that most Sudburians are very much in favour of cannabis retail stores in the City of Greater Sudbury," Fowke said.  

"So about 88 per cent in fact."

The city is now working with Oraclepoll Research on a telephone survey that will end Friday, December 7.

"The purpose for the telephone survey is to create for council some more statistically significant outcome in terms of...key questions around cannabis retail in Sudbury," Fowke said.

Results of both the online and telephone surveys will be presented to the new city council on December 11.