Marijuana business ban set for May 11 public hearing

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SPRING LAKE — The borough council introduced an ordinance Tuesday night banning all classes of cannabis business within the municipality.

The proposed ordinance would amend chapter 225 of the borough code and establish a new section, 13.1, regarding cannabis prohibition. A public hearing and potential adoption is set for the council’s May 11 meeting at 7 p.m.

The borough code currently prohibits “marijuana/cannabis dispensaries, stores or facilities of any kind, or stores that sell paraphernalia that facilitate the use of marijuana/cannabis.”

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Many local municipalities, including Manasquan, Spring Lake Heights, Brielle and Avon-By-The-Sea, have taken similar steps following Gov. Phil Murphy’s signing of The New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory, Enforcement Assistance, and Marketplace Modernization Act in February.

The act, legalizing cannabis use and possession for adults 21 years and older, also sets forth guidelines for regulating the adult-use recreational cannabis marketplace.

According to the act, municipalities would have 180 days, ending on Aug. 22, to enact an ordinance prohibiting any one or more classes of cannabis establishment or distributors. If a municipality failed to enact an ordinance within 180 days, it would have to wait five years before being able to do so.

About 67 percent of New Jersey voters approved the legalization of recreational cannabis use for adults in last November’s general election.

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