City approves moratorium on medical MJ stores

 BY BENJAMIN GOHS

Boyne City Commissioners voted unanimously to prohibit medical marijuana stores in the city – for now.

The vote came during the commission’s March 22, meeting.

“This is an issue communities all across the state are facing with the new voter-approved legislation,” said Boyne City Manager Michael Cain. “We’re trying to figure out how to react to all the ins and outs of this.”

He added, “There are a lot of details still being sorted out at the court levels.”

Boyne City Planner Scott McPherson said the moratorium will last six months.

“Basically it put a hold on any type of that use being developed,” he said. “This gives the city an opportunity to research the issue and time to identify possible courses of action.”

Since the law passed in late-2008, municipalities across the state have scrambled to pass zoning laws in an attempt to regulate if, where and how medical marijuana dispensaries and marijuana collectives maybe operated.

Boyne City now joins Flint, Linden, Fenton and Cadillac among cities who have put the issue on hold.

What this moratorium does not do is change the law which allows approved patients with proper state identification from growing, possessing and using marijuana for medically-approved purposes.

The moratorium only affects potential medical marijuana stores – of which Boyne City currently has none.

“One of the things communities are looking to do is not make a mistake, and make sure we are working with the best current information available,” Cain said. “We feel we need a little more time – and we’re watching what our neighboring communities are doing across the state.”

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