• Jim Mosher

Gimli’s Palson pulls plug on support forAlta Greens's proposed cannabis plant

The registered corporate address of Alta Greens Ally Ltd. is a UPS Store behind a trendy mall in Calgary.

Dear Editor:

Re: Alta Greens Ally Ltd. potential development

When council was first approached by Alta Greens Ally Ltd. with the economic development opportunity of an indoor commercial cannabis production facility in Gimli, I was excited.

When asked to sign a Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA), I understood that large-scale commercial venture planning processes can be years in negotiations — working through the checks and balances — and it made sense that they were looking to secure confidentiality through the process. Given the nature of these types of negotiations, I agreed to sign the NDA in good faith and as a stepping stone to building a trust relationship with the developers.

Gimli Coun. Thora Palson says company did "not follow a normal process".

I understood that the first step for the company was to negotiate a site and look to the municipality for incentives. In the past, the municipality has offered land at a discounted rate as a development incentive, and I was comfortable with that.

Then things changed.

There are ways to work with an ambitious, start-up company while still safeguarding taxpayers’ assets. I suggested leasing or starting off with selling a smaller parcel or other arrangements that weren’t just a rush to transfer title of a considerable amount of public lands to a company that had not followed a normal process.

To engage with a potential developer there is a process: the presentation of a business plan, a portrait of a company profile, an environmental impact assessment, financial disclosure and public engagement when the negotiations are at a stage that both parties mutually agree [to move forward].

The RM of Gimli is in the business of growing the community responsibly by working with potential developers and providing land incentives. We are not in the business of financing large-scale public assets to a start-up company from Alberta that is not providing any credible documentation in regards to its company profile, business plan, commitment to be stewards of the environment, and its ability and stage of progress with Health Canada Cannabis Licensing.

Given the information I have provided, I will not be supporting this any further.

Thora Palson,

Councillor RM of Gimli

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