City looking for ways to halt development of marijuana dispensary
NEW PHILADELPHIA (WJER) (May 24, 2022) – City officials are trying to figure out how to keep a proposed marijuana dispensary from going into a pocket of unincorporated land between West High and Maple avenues.
Limited liability company Ratio Cannabis has been granted provisional approval to develop one in what’s currently the West End Drive-Thru, though it must comply with the rules and regulations of Ohio’s medical marijuana program and pass a final inspection before it can open. Councilwoman Cheryl Ramos represents the city’s First Ward, which includes the proposed dispensary site. She asked Law Director Marvin Fete if there were any provisions in the city’s ordinance prohibiting marijuana-related businesses that could put a stop to the development.
“I don’t believe we have any recourse. I think there are some regulations with regards to being close to schools, things of that nature. This isn’t anywhere close to a school but I’d be happy to look into it.”
Councilman Dean Holland wanted to know if they could refuse to provide utilities to the site. Fete says the Ohio Supreme Court has upheld the right of municipalities to do so for new developments on unincorporated properties, but he’s not sure about buildings already receiving water and sewer service from the city.
“I don’t know that we can take it away, but that’s something I’d be happy to research.”
The discussion took place at Monday’s city council meeting. Fete will report back to members with his findings.