FREDERICTON (GNB) – The following statement was issued today by Finance Minister Cathy Rogers regarding the release of the report of the Task Force on Cannabis Legalization and Regulation to the federal government:

We welcome the report released today by the federal Task Force on Cannabis Legalization and Regulation as a significant step forward in providing direction for the federal government with respect to legalization. We look forward to the federal government’s response to this report, as it will assist New Brunswick and other provinces and territories as we plan for legalization of marijuana.

Legalization is a federal initiative. The implications, however, are significant for provincial governments. That is why it is essential that we understand the direction of the federal government before we can make solid plans or react in detail.

Job creation and the well-being of our families are our top priorities in New Brunswick. In fact, in order to position ourselves as leaders, our province has already taken advantage of opportunities by fostering the creation of new production as well as value-added and specialized product development in areas such as medical marijuana. We are working with all stakeholders and listening to New Brunswickers as we get ready for the potential economic opportunities. While our government recognizes how important this file is, we remain committed to leading and keeping New Brunswick families safe and healthy.