Vernon BC Lifts Professional MMA Ban Clearing Way For Sport’s Return to City

When British Columbia first legalized combat sports earlier this decade the Province allowed individual Cities to opt out of these sports and ban them in their jurisdiction.  Specifically section 59(f)(1) of BC’s Community Charter provided Cities with the power to pass bylaws that “prohibit professional boxing, professional wrestling and other professional athletic contests

In 2014 the City of Vernon, BC became the first (and to my knowledge the only) City to exercise this power.  Citing unverified ties between the sport and organized crime the City passed Bylaw 5505-2014 which prohibited professional MMA events.

This week Vernon reversed course and rescinded the Bylaw.  It appears the City’s fears were unfounded and promoters are now free to host events in Vernon provided they obtain permission and comply with all requirements set out by BC’s Provincial Athletic Commission.

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