Cannabis grow-op may be com­ing to Port Union

Daniel Porter leads in­vestor group eye­ing for­mer fish plant

The Packet (Clarenville) - - Front page - BY JONATHAN PAR­SONS

TRIN­ITY BAY NORTH, N.L. — When look­ing for a new ten­ant for the old fish plant in Port Union, the goal of the mu­nic­i­pal­ity of Trin­ity Bay North was to “grow their econ­omy.”

Now it’s pos­si­ble a po­ten­tial “grow-op­er­a­tion” will do just that for the com­mu­nity.

Daniel Porter — orig­i­nally from Champ­ney’s West, who moved to Clarenville as a teenager and cur­rently lives in St. John’s — leads a group of four in­vestors who would like to use the for­mer fish plant in Port Union as a cannabis pro­duc­tion fa­cil­ity.

While he says he’s not quite ready to un­veil the name of their en­ter­prise — it’s go­ing to be a bit of a sur­prise — Porter told The Packet all about his plans for a cannabis busi­ness in Port Union in an in­ter­view on Mon­day.

“The rea­son I picked the plant in Port Union, there’s a cou­ple rea­sons for that … I grew up in the area. It is also, phys­i­cally, one of the only build­ings be­tween 50,000-100,000 square-feet on the east coast of the is­land that is still in good enough shape to ren­o­vate and not have to be torn down and re­placed,” he said.

He says he looked at about 10 dif­fer­ent build­ings on his search, mostly for­mer fish plants on the east coast, and found only two that fit the bill.

The plant has been va­cant since it was dam­aged dur­ing hur­ri­cane Igor in 2010.

Since then, the town has been work­ing with the plant own­ers Ocean Choice In­ter­na­tional (OCI) to trans­fer own­er­ship of the fa­cil­ity to the town.

Now, the plan is for the sale to go di­rectly from OCI to Porter’s group.

“I kind of cut in on that process in the middle of it be­fore it ac­tu­ally changed hands,” ex­plained Porter.

“Once I in­ter­jected my plan, rather than deal with OCI in­de­pen­dently, I went straight to the town and spoke to them about my idea.”

They’re still fi­nal­iz­ing talks to take over the struc­ture.

“I should have the keys by May 15 … Right now, the lawyers are do­ing the ti­tle search, we’re just al­lo­cat­ing funds and set­ting up our com­pany struc­ture to close the deal. There’s noth­ing hold­ing it up other than lo­gis­tics.”

CON­TRIB­UTED PHOTO CON­TRIB­UTED IM­AGE

Kathryn and Daniel Porter. An artist’s ren­der­ing of the planned ren­o­va­tions for the plant in Port Union. Porter, who works in the con­struc­tion busi­ness, says the build­ing is in mostly good shape. He is plan­ning a tra­di­tional-style look­ing struc­ture...

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