MA: Braintree Council Still Considering Marijuana Action

Photo Credit: Justin Sullivan

A town council committee will schedule new hearings on proposals which would ban the sale and production of recreational marijuana in town.

Proposals on marijuana have been before the town council for months and have been the subject of several hearings.

At-Large Councilor Sean Powers, the new chairman of the council’s ordinance and rules committee, said the additional hearings are needed for a couple of reasons.

“We have three new members and we need to get them up to speed,” Powers said.

The three councilors joined the council earlier this month. Two of them, District 5 Councilor David Ringius and District 6 Councilor Timothy Carey serve on the ordinance and rules committee.

Powers also cited the decision of U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions this month to rescind the policy ending enforcement of federal marijuana laws in states where its use has been legalized.

He also said the committee would also review the information from the past hearings.

Powers, who had served as council president until its reorganization on Jan. 2, said the council didn’t act before the end of the former council term because “I think we just ran out of time on the calendar.”

Town Council President Charles Ryan said of the marijuana proposals, “the council will be taking it up very soon.”

Former District 6 Town Councilor Dan Clifford, a staunch opponent of recreational marijuana, took to social media this week to let people know the recreational marijuana issue is not settled. The town’s voters opposed recreational marijuana in the 2016 statewide referendum.

“We’re in a position now where we’re second guessing the voter,” Clifford said in an interview. “I’m trying to let the people know who voted no on recreational marijuana that their vote is coming under inspection.”

Mayor Joseph Sullivan supports a ban on retail sales of marijuana in town, but he has been open to the idea of allowing some production facilities in town.