Medical Marijuana

Conway Planning Board to consider medical marijuana moratorium

CONWAY —On May 2, the Planning Board will consider a one-year moratorium on medical marijuana dispensaries in the town.

The moratorium would give the Planning Board time to work out new zoning bylaws related to the facilities.

Chairman Diane Poland insisted the moratorium is not “an attempt to ban medical marijuana facilities. It’s a measure to help the town have one year to prepare.”

Poland said there would be many issues for the town to consider, including security issues and siting issues. The Planning Board will also determine what the cost to the town would be and what fees the town could charge a facility.

The Attorney General’s Office allows towns to place temporary moratoriums on medical marijuana dispensaries to determine zoning rules, but towns are not allowed to outright ban the centers.

In November 2012, Massachusetts voted in a new law allowing patients with certain medical conditions to use marijuana from one of the state registered facilities. Up to 35 medical marijuana dispensaries are allowed in the first year with a minimum of one per county, and a maximum of five.

The state Department of Public Health has a May 1 deadline to draft regulations for dispensaries and determine how much marijuana patients can possess.

The meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. at the Town Office.

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