Ontario municipalities had a one-time option to opt out of having cannabis retail stores in their communities. They had until January 22, 2019 to notify the AGCO that their council had passed a resolution to opt out of having cannabis retail stores. Municipalities that choose to opt out can opt back in at any time—but once they have opted in, they may not reverse their decision. 

Cannabis retail stores cannot be located in a municipality that has passed a resolution prohibiting cannabis retail stores from being located in the municipality. 

  • The AGCO's website has a list of municipalities that have decided not to allow cannabis retail stores.  
  • Municipalities that have opted-in may not create a licensing system respecting the sale of cannabis nor pass a bylaw that distinguishes land or building use for cannabis from any other kinds of use. 

Near Schools:  

Things to Know Before You Begin:

As an applicant, it is your responsibility to ensure your proposed retail store location meets school proximity requirements at all times throughout the  entire application process. 

The use of iAGCO to check the eligibility of a potential retail location is not advice and does not function as a substitute for an applicant’s continued due diligence. 

The submission of your application does not guarantee approval. The determination that an RSA application satisfies all retail location requirements is made based on information available at the time of issuance of the RSA and not at the time of submission of the application through iAGCO.

Please note that changes to an applicant's proposed location requires submission of a new application. Application fees are non-refundable.

The Registrar cannot issue an RSA to a proposed cannabis retail store located less than 150 metres from a school or private school, as defined in the Education Act. This will be determined as follows:  

  • When the school or private school is the primary or only occupant of a building, 150 metres shall be measured from the property line of the property on which the school or private school is located.  
  • When the school or private school is not the primary or only occupant of a building, 150 meters shall be measured from the boundary of any space occupied by the school or private school within the building. 

The distance between a proposed retail store and a school or private school is measured by a straight line from the closest point of the school property or boundary as described above to the closest point of the proposed retail store.

If either the store or the school is not on the ground floor or main level of its building, the 150-meter distance rule might also consider the vertical distance from each other in assessing compliance with this requirement.

The above rules do not apply if the private school is located on a reserve or if the private school only offers classes through the Internet.

Online submission of the application is not a guarantee or confirmation that the proposed location is compliant with the school proximity restriction. The proposed retail location must be in compliance with the school proximity requirement at the time the RSA is issued.