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Medical Marijuana

Pasiecnik: Moratorium won’t hurt plans

Reconsidering using Deerfield site for dispensary

WHATELY — Whately farmer James Pasiecnik said Wednesday the moratorium the town set this week on medical marijuana dispensaries and cultivation centers doesn’t hamper his plans if granted a state license.

At a special town meeting this week, Whately residents placed a ban on medical marijuana treatment centers until May 30, 2014 to give the Planning Board time to develop local zoning rules to govern such dispensaries.

Planning Board member Judy Markland said the board is aiming to have zoning rules for residents to vote on by the April town meeting. The extra month was a safeguard in case the town meeting is pushed off.

Pasiecnik, who has applied for one of the 35 state licenses to run a dispensary and grow center in Franklin County, said he is still moving forward with his application. Pasiecnik has proposed a cultivation center at his farm property at 207 River Road under the nonprofit J.M. Farm’s Patient Group. He would not say exactly where the dispensary would go.

Pasiecnik is once again considering opening a dispensary in Deerfield.

He has set his sights on the former Disston Co. building within the Deerfield Industrial Park, which is being auctioned off Oct. 28 at 11 a.m.

“I’m going to be there. It’s a possible site,” Pasiecnik said.

For 15 years, Disston, a tool company, based its operations at 5 Industrial Drive West until moving to Chicopee this summer.

The 275,000-square-foot building was owned by Deerfield Plaza LLC until the bank foreclosed on it. The minimum bid is set at $75,000.

Pasiecnik also said he owns property within the industrial district in South Deerfield that could be a possible dispensary site.

The Deerfield Planning Board has proposed creating an overlay district for medical marijuana dispensary and grow centers that encompasses the planned industrial district and the lower portion of the industrial district — two areas that could be zoned for treatment centers.

The planned industrial district is made up of the industrial park off Route 116, while the portion of the industrial district sited is south of Elm Street across from Red Roof Inn and Yankee Candle Co. The town will vote on the zoning bylaw on Oct. 28 at special town meeting.

So far, Pasiecnik has support from the Whately Board of Selectmen. The Deerfield Board of Selectmen hasn’t decided yet.

You can reach Kathleen McKiernan at:
kmckiernan@recorder.com
or 413-772-0261 ext. 268.

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