Westminster Council hears cases for, against medical marijuana dispensary
Westminster’s Mayor and Common Council heard public testimony Monday, June 25, about an ordinance that would amend local zoning to approve of a medical cannabis dispensary in the Fairground Village shopping center.
“I am not opposed to medical cannabis, I am opposed to the location,” said Deborah Pujals, a Westminster resident, voicing concerns about safety. “It should be in a better place.”
It’s a fairly nondescript building along a stretch of Taneytown Pike on the north side of Taneytown, with no obvious signs that anything special lies inside.
Look closer, however, and you might notice the 18 heavy-duty HVAC units along the outside of the building.
And while there was nary a whiff…
Pujals was the only resident to testify in opposition of the medical dispensary.
“It’s not a service for the community, it’s a service for people that are sick and needing it,” Pujals said, explaining that she’d like to see the dispensary set closer to medical facilities.
But the whole purpose of the Medical Cannabis Overlay — the policy outlined in the ordinance — is to comply with state law, said Stephanie Brophy, an attorney representing the medical cannabis company approved for a dispensary, MyBond, LLC.
Brophy argued that having a dispensary with strict state regulations in a strip mall is akin to a pharmacy among the stores.
The only difference, Brophy said, is that dispensary patients are not allowed to consume their prescription in their car or the parking lot.
Brophy presented the council with a detailed layout of the proposed facility and how it was going to comply with state law. The proposed structure has a public area, a service area which the public can enter if accompanied by a licensed