MI: Marijuana Land Rush In Chesaning Prompts Hold On More Facilities

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Chesaning village officials call the recent land rush for medical marijuana facilities a “whirlwind.”

So far, the Village Council has approved licenses for two provisioning centers or dispensaries and several grow/process facilities.

But after Tuesday night’s meeting on Feb. 20, the craze for the blaze will come to a pause.

The village Council passed a 180-day moratorium on new applications for medical marijuana facilities that will go into effect on July 1.

Chesaning village Administrator Troy Feltman said new applications can still be accepted until July.

“The state has not completed their final rules through LARA and in all honesty we’ve got a bunch of one-person departments, so we’re a little overwhelmed trying to keep pace,” Feltman said. “I think the idea is let’s catch our breath. Let’s see what the state comes out with,  see if we have to modify either our ordinance or our rules.”

In June 2017, the Village Council opted into the state medical marijuana facilities act and since then the interest in medical marijuana facilities has taken off. The following is a list of locations that have been approved for grow/process facilities in the village of Chesaning :

•Grow and process licenses – 624 Brady St.

•A site where 40 acres was purchased. It will have seven grow licenses and four processing licenses -700 N. Main St.

•Grow and process licenses – 1117 N. Main St.

“They opted in with the mindset that the only cap they put on any of the facilities was provisioning centers … and they set that at two,” Feltman said. “So the remainder grow, processing, et cetera are unlimited.”

Another request for a property located at 1100 W. Brady was was tabled until the next Planning Commission meeting.

The property is 450,000 square feet and hopeful buyers are calling the location Cannabis Business Park.

The request was tabled because of how close it would be to a state-licensed day care center located inside Trinity United Methodist Church, 1629 Brady St.

“They lease space for a private day-care center there,” Feltman said

He said the ordinance requires the marijuana facilities to be 1,000 feet from any property line containing an elementary, secondary or vocational school.

The Planning Commission suggested getting feedback from lawyers before making any decisions about the land. The next meeting is scheduled for Feb. 27.

The Rev. Timothy Woycik of Trinity Church said he has concerns about the facilities being so close to the church as well as schools and businesses.

However, Woycik said he understands that people who are in pain or have cancer might benefit from the marijuana facilities.

But he said he does not understand why “Chesaning is already becoming a glamour site for the marijuana industry.”

“Right now a lot these business that are seeking to come into Chesaning are coming in under the idea that they are providing medical marijuana,” Woycik said.

Over time, he said he thinks that idea could change if a proposal for using marijuana for recreation gets on a ballot. Woycik said he thinks Michigan could become a recreational marijuana-use state.

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