The Troy City Council braved a blizzard to meet last night at a special meeting called to discuss the Medical Marihuana Facilities Licensing Act. Despite the inclement weather, nearly every seat was filled in the small meeting room.
Shelly Edgerton – the Director of LARA, gave a brief overview of the new Medical Marijuana Facilities Licensing Act. Under the new regulation, businesses will be able to get a license to operate from the state, as long as they receive municipal approval first. Under the current caregiver model, 72 plants is the maximum quantity allowed by any one person.
The new license structure allows for a ‘Class C’ license which allows for up to 1500 plants. Each business can have multiple Class C licenses within on location if the city permits it, which is known as ‘stacking’.
Jeff Schroder – Senior Attorney at Plunkett Cooney, went into some specifics of the pros and cons associated with opting in as a municipality, as well as the process involved.
Afterward, Schroder fielded questions such as ‘Can we restrict plant count in a facility to be less than 500?’, ‘Can we prohibit stacking?’, and ‘Why is a caregiver at a disadvantage under the new law?’.
While most of the council members had completed a fair amount of due diligence, including touring facilities and talking to current caregivers, there were still many questions about enforcement, security, and the seed to sale platform.
Q & A amongst the council members went on for over an hour before the floor was opened up to public comment. While one local was completely against marijuana, almost everybody else who spoke was for it. The room consisted primarily of Troy business and property owners who want to see the growth of the industry in the city, most of whom stood up to give their perspective.
Troy is currently home to 55 approved caregivers that are operating cultivation facilities. If the city does not opt in to the new MMFLA structure, it will likely push these current tenants to leave the city, and move to a location that is further along in the licensing process. This will leave behind a good chunk of vacant warehouse space in the city.
If the city council does not make a decision regarding the new framework, they will automatically remain opted out, prohibiting facilities from getting state licensed within the Troy limits
While Mayor Dane Slater was supportive of potentially opting in after hearing the perspective of the local business owners, his fellow council members were not quite convinced. After some debate it was agreed to postpone the decision until January 22, 2018 to give the council members more time to complete their due diligence.