Grow, Gift, Repair

Municipal Guidance Article: Brookline

Included in Brookline’s proposed regulations is a cap on the number of special permits, at the state minimum of 20 percent of the number of outstanding package store licenses – about four to five licenses. The proposal does allow for a change to the cap during Town Meeting in May, but if the town wishes to go below the minimum state requirement, there must be a town-wide vote.

According to the proposed draft of the warrant articles, state law requires at least one license available for existing medical marijuana facilities. Precinct 16 Town Meeting member Regina Frawley argued in favor of a cap of zero, which Assistant Town Counsel Patricia Correa confirmed as a possibility.

“The cap is something that might change at Town Meeting. Town Meeting could easily propose a cap of zero, they could also propose a cap of 50 licenses, so these layers that regulate density and size might be overly burdensome,” said Francisco Torres, the town’s economic development and long-term planner.

According to Correa, the town’s understanding – after town counsel’s meeting with the Massachusetts Municipal Association and a private attorney – is that the cap be set at zero with a town-wide vote, regardless of any medical marijuana dispensary already operating in town.

If Town Meeting doesn’t vote to set the cap to zero, once CNB issues licenses, existing medical marijuana establishments, in this case, New England Treatment Access (NETA), will receive priority.