A slight change to the city of Houghton’s medical marijuana ordinance could have a major effect on the city’s lone dispensary.
When the state enacted its medical marijuana law last fall, Houghton was told their existing ordinance allowed for the continued operation of a local dispensary.
The ordinance lays out restrictions on the number of dispensaries, limited to one, and where it can operate. Because their ordinance was already in place, the city council chose to do what most other municipalities in the Upper Peninsula did last fall and took no further action.
The state has now determined that the city must update the wording of the ordinance so it pertains to provisioning centers and not dispensaries. Now that the ordinance needs to be revised, the city council will once again need to decide whether to vote in favor of changing it or take no action.
Councilmember John Sullivan asked City Manager Eric Waara what would happen if the council did not approve the change. Waara said in that case it was likely the Houghton dispensary would have to close. Sullivan responded by saying, “Good.”
A public hearing on the ordinance is scheduled for September 26th at 5:30pm in the Houghton City Center.