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Tuesday, August 9, 2022

Weed rush: How Saline deals with the influx of marijuana business proposals

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Saleen, Michigan – Since approval for recreational marijuana was granted, the city of Salen has seen a lot of interest from retailers.

In fact, city offices have been “inundated” with orders, according to councilman Jim Dell’Orco.

So that the officials decided Temporarily stop accepting new applications While they smoothed out some wrinkles in the process, they eventually voted to increase the original 250-foot buffer between dispensaries to 1,000 feet.

“I think that was probably the only shortcoming that existed in the initial act,” Saline Mayor Brian Marle said. “Our fear is that we’re going to fill up more than the marijuana dispensaries in Saline City.”

There are currently six proposed marijuana locations: the former Mickey’s Dairy Twist at 751 West Michigan Ave. , Come Dancing at 465 E. Michigan Ave. , Zax Auto Wash at 660 E. Michigan Ave, Octapharma Plasma at 813 W. Michigan Ave., 7608 E. Michigan Ave. Near Tractor Supply Co. and Lot20A which is part of the business park next to Zippy Auto Wash.

“I knew there was going to be a lot of interest because the guys in this business is a cash operation…they have a lot of money to play with,” Dell’Orco said.

The way to the weed rush

saline solution first Vote to allow medical marijuana In June 2021. Then in March 2022, the City Council Voted to allow recreational marijuana businesses in the city.

Saline decided not to cap marijuana permits, but instead to limit businesses to specific zoning areas in commercial areas outside downtown and use buffers to limit the number of retailers. This made it more attractive to potential companies.

Sean Mansour, attorney and owner of Rush Cannabis – one of the dispensaries that provide play for Saline – said the one thing that made the city “attractive” was the lack of cover.

“I commend Saline for issuing a decree … which essentially restricts the number of sites by dividing them into zones,” Mansour said. “There are a number of municipalities that implement a ranking system or a points system and this is almost always cause lawsuits Because it’s arbitrary.”

Dell’Orco said there are several different reasons why recreational retailers are allowed into the city besides giving voters what they want and generating tax revenue.

An important reason for Dell’Orco was to maintain control over how marijuana is regulated within the city rather than allowing others the opportunity to control it.

“Essentially, the people who want to set up these companies with their lobby and people will be in the driving seat,” he said. “If they get their own proposals on the ballot and the voters approve them — the city will lose a great deal of control over zoning, licensing, and regulation if we don’t choose to go in front of it.”

Not only that, but Dell’Orco said the city also expected retailers to redevelop vacant properties or older buildings that could use renovations — however, some applicants showed that’s not necessarily the case.

“It has happened to some extent, but what we find in the application process is that they either want to buy completely vacant land and build from the ground up, or they want to buy existing businesses,” Dell’Orco said.

Mickey’s Dairy Twist

One of the main sites that highlighted this was Mickey’s Dairy Twist. There was a societal backlash when residents learned that their beloved local ice cream shop was about to become the city’s first dispensary.

Rush Cannabis is expected to fill the former site of the old Saline ice cream parlor after final approval of the site plan.

Mansour said he’s seen clinics redevelop older buildings that other retailers wouldn’t even think of touching. He said Mickey’s Dairy Twist is an example of a building that can use transformation.

The dispensary has another location in Hazel Park which opened in April. Mansour said Rush Cannabis aims to open his saltwater location by Thanksgiving and be the city’s first dispensary.

The future of marijuana in Saline

Saleen City Councilman Kevin Kamiro Solak isn’t surprised by the number of applications the city receives.

“It seems that we have a large number of applications … but that does not mean that they will all be approved or that there are sites that they can rent or build,” he said.

Despite the number of orders, Marle isn’t concerned that the city will be overrun with marijuana or that all dispensaries will continue. He expects to end up with two to three – perhaps four – clinics within the city.

“I think in this particular situation, the market will eventually correct itself if, and if the keyword is, we become saturated with dispensaries in Saline,” he said.

As Saline’s marijuana development continues, Marl looks to surrounding areas like Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti and realizes that recreational marijuana sellers can operate. Encourages city dwellers to connect with questions and concerns.

“Just look around in Washtenaw County,” he said. “We have countless examples of good, attractive, stable societies that have committed these types of industries and have not … detracted from the quality of life in their own communities.”

Read more on this topic: Protest at dispensary near daycare leads to pause in marijuana allowed in Saline

Aiming to avoid the dispensary “in every corner of us”, Saline changes marijuana rules

Brine sets the framework for the city’s medical marijuana business

Read more Ann Arbor news:

Summerfest brings fun, food and music to Saline

2 Ann Arbor Streets closed for crane installation and partition work

Al Dente Pasta is closing the Whitmore Lake site to find more space

Ann Arbor Center for the Arts is looking for a new CEO

Grow guide for marijuana beginners.
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