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Mayor says Santé Veritas staying in Powell River

POWELL RIVER, B.C- Santé Veritas is not leaving Powell River.

That’s according to Powell River mayor Dave Formosa, speaking to the newsroom after questions on the company’s recent actions were raised during the local election.

The company, titled Santé Veritas Therapeutics, is building a large facility in the town for growing cannabis. It is also in the process of a corporate merger with three American companies to form TILT, a multinational corporation.

That merger was cited by Santé Veritas chief executive officer John Walker, as a factor in a temporary suspension of construction at the site. In an emailed statement reported by the Powell River Peak, Walker said the merger should be finished within weeks.

In his statement, Walker also indicated nothing had changed about plans to bring the facility into operation and expand in future.

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Formosa said that it was business as usual for the company, though they’re still waiting on a license to be issued from Health Canada.

“They still have staff working there, but they’ve given some temporary layoff slips, that’s it,” said Formosa.

“They still have every intention of adding on, and staying in Powell River, and I think we’re in good shape. I wouldn’t be panicking, that’s for sure.”

He believed that discussion about the company ceasing operations in Powell River had been driven up by the election, and stated that he had spoke with “high up, credible” people at the company on the matter. Legalization earlier in the week was believed to be a source of slowdown for Health Canada as well.

“This is what I’ve been told, and I know there’s still people working there,” said Formosa.

“Folks that were laid off apparently will be called back to work once they get their license so they can carry on with their growth.”

He pledged support from City Hall for the company’s growth and needs, and mentioned that they had already been playing a role in introducing the business to Catalyst.

“Regardless of who the mayor is, I’m sure that any one of us three will be happy to continue to work with this group, and see as many people employed in Powell River as possible,” said Formosa.

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