A request for a second cannabis store location on George Street was turned down at tonight’s (Monday) Prince George City Council meeting, but just barely.

A temporary use permit and a cannabis license application for Epik Products Inc. were both denied by Council in a split 4-4 vote.

The application would see a new dispensary put in the old Long and McQuade building, located at 356 George Street.

Many businesses in the area, including the nearby Grasshopper dispensary, provided documents in opposition.

Councilors Terri McConnachie, Garth Frizzell, Kyle Sampson and Brian Skakun voiced their support for a two-year temporary use agreement.

McConnachie pointed out some individuals happen to use cannabis for mental health and medicinal purposes, and should not be stigmatized.

Mayor Lyn Hall and several other Councilors were concerned about the location, however.

They noted there are already a number dispensaries in the downtown area, so another was not needed.

Councilors Frank Everitt, Susan Scott, Cori Ramsay and Mayor Hall voted in opposition, with Councilor Murry Krause not in attendance.

Meanwhile, Council also looked at the monthly building permit development summary for July and August, finding Prince George is only at 80 percent of value compared to the same time last year.

At a glance, that’s not good news said Councillor Garth Frizzell during the meeting, but adds when you take Covid-19 into account, it’s not such a dark picture.

“You take a look at these for July and for August and you see that we are behind,” commented Frizzell.

“I think that there’s a bit of a more interesting story here though. Even in the midst of Covid-19 we are at 80 percent of what we were in previous years. People have a lot of faith in this community, projects are continuing, they are not stopping, they see a future here,” he explained.

July saw 54 permits issued worth $32,976,49 and August saw $48,380,824 with 67 permits issued.