WATCH: The founder of Terp City Lounge says it is suing the City of Victoria, claiming the business being treated unlawfully. Isabelle Raghem reports.
Kyle Cheyne grows just over a hundred cannabis plants in Sooke to supply some of the marijuana businesses he runs on Vancouver Island, including Terp City Lounge In Victoria.
“A lounge is a place you simply come pay a cover five dollars, four dollars and use your medicine in that space,” explains the founder.
It’s also the business at the centre of a battle with the city as Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps seeks an injunction to shut it down.
“Most dispensaries have been compliant, most dispensaries have applied for business license and rezoning and this one has not and shows not intention in doing so so we’re taking them to court,” said Helps on Saturday.
But Terp City’s owner is fighting back.
“She’s trying to put us in the category as dispensaries and we’re not a dispensary and we can’t apply for anything,” said Cheyne Sunday. “She’s trying to bend everything right now by saying we’re not complying because there’s no regulation for lounges.”
He’s now in the process of suing the city for trying to shut them down. He says there simply aren’t licenses or applications available for his type of business.
“We need to get lounge regulation into place, it’s not like this is not gonna be a problem in the future. There’s gonna be more lounges challenging this,” said Cheyne.
He insists lounges are needed in the city.
“These people can’t consume at home, they can’t consume in their buildings, like they can’t consume anywhere really, and if you’re gonna legalize cannabis, we have bars, we have clubs, we have all these different places that people can come and actually consume something that can kill you.”
It’s not the only case he’s building against the city. He will also be taking them to court in regards to his dispensary called Leaf Compassion on Yates Street for which an application was denied.
“We’re gonna be suing them for, you know, unlawfully judging us and denying us for rezoning. We followed absolutely everything.”
The mayor tells CHEK this will be the first time the city has taken a pot shop to court, but won’t be the last.
Cheyne says he’s not going down without a fight.