The County Board of Richland voted Tuesday to amend its rules for cannabis dispensaries in the unincorporated areas. The change was made after an amendment last week that required a dispensary’s principal investor or owner of more than 10% stake in the company be located within 100 miles, which is different from state law.
The “oregon dispensary rules 2021” is an amendment to the state’s cannabis dispensary rules. The county board amended the rules in July of this year, which will be effective on January 1st, 2021.
Before voting to approve an amendment that would enable cannabis shops to apply to be located in the county’s agricultural zones, Kankakee County Board members discussed changing the county’s zoning standards for the establishments.
In addition to operating in agricultural zones, the legislation adopted Tuesday alters County Code Sections 121-99 and 121-209 with new phrasing that permits dispensaries to be located closer to nearby businesses, operate outdoors, and offer drive-thrus in exceptional instances.
The recommended modifications, according to Board Chairman Andy Wheeler, were driven by the market.
He said, “A dispensing facility would not locate in the middle of nowhere in rural Kankakee County; they want traffic movement.”
Dispensaries could previously only seek for a special use permission to open in Kankakee County’s commercial or industrial zones, excluding towns with their own zoning regulations. The majority of the county’s outlying reaches are designated for agricultural usage.
“We’ve received a few queries on certain properties and would want to reduce the minimum setback from 2,500 feet, which is over half a mile, to 1,500 feet, which is little over half a mile,” Kankakee County planning manager Delbert Skimerhorn said during his presentation on the amendment.
Dispensaries must be set back from the property lines of surrounding “schools, playgrounds, parks, religious facilities, communal residential dwellings, correctional institutions, and registered childcare facilities,” according to the setback.
“Cannabis distribution is not a concern for me.” “However, I’m really concerned that it will be closer to schools, churches, playgrounds, and jails,” District 23 representative Heather Bryan said. “I believe the county has enough property to accommodate this without violating.”
Wheeler referred to the modifications as a “framework,” noting that prospective dispensaries would still need to fulfill planning, zoning, and agricultural committee conditions before being permitted.
“I don’t feel we need a cannabis dispensary in the county, therefore I will vote no,” said District 1 delegate Roger Hess.
District 13 representative Jake Collins claimed that marijuana already has a big presence in the area, whether it is accepted or not.
“We may as well tax a great company and attempt to control and include it as much as possible into our society,” he remarked. “These aren’t settings where individuals are selling marijuana to kids via the back door.”
Illinois recreational marijuana sales in 2021 totaled $1.12 billion at the end of October, with almost $123 million sold in only one month.
The modification was approved by a 14-10 vote of the board.
The changes were supported by Todd Sirois, R-3; Stephen Liehr, R-28; Tinker Parker, R-5; Colton Ekhoff, R-2; John Fetherling, R-7; Aaron Dunnill, R-24; Chad Miller, R-25; Larry Kerkstra, D-21; Steven Hunter, D-17; Bryan, D-23; Collins, L-13; Matt Alexander-Hildebrand, R-16; Michael Gowler, R-12; and Wheeler.
Hess, R-1, Patricia Polk, D-19, Robert Ellington-Snipes, D-18, Carol Webber, R-11, Janis Peters, R-8, Sam Payton, D-4, Raymond Fairfield, R-6, Antonio Carrico, R-22, Craig Long, R-9, and Kimberly Hudson, D-15 were among those who spoke out against the bill.
Chris Tholen (R-10) was missing, as were Joseph Swanson (R-14), Erik Rayman (R-20), and Kenneth Smith (R-27).
The board voted 15-12 in May to overturn a 2020 decision preventing cannabis stores from operating in unincorporated regions of the county.
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The “are dabs legal in oregon” is a question that many people have been asking over the past few years. The County Board of Beaverton has amended their dispensary rules, which now include cannabis concentrates.
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