Council discusses marijuana dispensary zoning


GARNER – The Garner City Council discussed regulating where marijuana dispensaries would be allowed to operate should the substance become legal in Iowa.

In February, representatives from the GHV Teen Council, Garner Asset Project (GAP) and Allies for Substance Abuse Prevention (ASAP) urged city officials to take a proactive stance and consider regulating where such businesses could be located. They also presented the council with a draft resolution.

Mayor Ken Mick said an ordinance would address zoning of dispensaries, the same way the council created a zoning ordinance several years ago regulating where adult-oriented businesses could be located.

 “That’s all I’m proposing here to the council that we consider establishing zoning. If at some point it becomes legal…we’ll have to deal with anything that come from that,” Mick said.

“Couldn’t we just follow the adult entertainment [ordinance] and do the same thing? Change the language in it?” Councilman Tim Schmidt asked.

 “Yes,” said Randy Lansing, city administrator. “That would be fairly simple to do. If it does become legal in the future, it may become null and void. Until then, we have it.”

Ken Mick said city attorney Phil Garland looked at the draft resolution presented at the February meeting.

“My commentary with Phil was that I didn’t see that as a finished product,” Mick said.

No formal action was taken at the June 27 meeting. Lansing will work on a resolution regulating were marijuana dispensaries can be located and bring it before the council at a future meeting.

Read the complete story in the July 4 Leader.