Ontario pot retailers who failed to open stores by April 15 face more penalties

TORONTO — Cannabis retailers in Ontario who have failed to open their stores by a government-set deadline are facing a new round of financial penalties.

In all, eleven pot retailers have been fined $12,500 each for not opening their stores by April 15.

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Twenty-five retailers were selected through a government lottery to open the first brick-and-mortar cannabis stores on April 1, but less than half met the deadline.

The Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario established a system of escalating penalties for retailers who didn't start serving customers on time.

The agency says it has drawn down on letters of credit submitted by the licencees — some for a second time — taking $12,500 from the $50,000 initially provided.

Stores that do not open by the end of the month could have further penalties.

There are currently 13 cannabis shops operating across the province.

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