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#MUNICIPAL #GUIDANCE: Wayland

Marijuana shop ban

A 531-194 vote is the first step to ban recreational marijuana shops within town borders. Voters at next spring’s town election must also approve the ban to take effect. Some residents on the floor said marijuana doesn’t fit Wayland’s values. Others said teenagers are already using the drug, and allowing regulated marijuana shops would provide a safe product.

State law requires that communities that voted to legalize recreational marijuana statewide in November 2016 to take two votes to ban recreational marijuana within their borders – one at Town Meeting and another at the polls. Wayland voters barely supported Question 4 on the November 2016, which legalized recreational marijuana statewide, 4,268-4,189.

The second vote next April is necessary because last month’s 1,226-465 special election vote to ban marijuana shops was ruled invalid. Selectmen failed to notify all residents by mail of the election.

Marijuana district

A Marijuana Establishments District on Rte. 20 at the Sudbury line was approved, 448-216. Planning Board Chairman Daniel Hill said on the floor that the district is needed to protect town interests. That’s because Wayland’s temporary moratorium on recreational marijuana establishments expires at year’s end; between then and when the town votes on a ban in April, a marijuana shop could try to set up without the town having a say where it goes. A district would keep the business in an area the town prefers, Hill said.

The district allows for a maximum of two retailers, or no fewer than 20 percent of the number of licenses issued within the town for the retail sale of alcohol. They also couldn’t be located within 500 feet of an existing K-12 private or public school.

Passage of a recreational ban in April would still allow one medical marijuana business in the district. Cultivation, manufacturing, testing, research and transportation are the kinds of businesses allowed.