CLOSE

Skip in

Ohio lawmakers have legalized medical marijuana so when can you expect to see it?
Jessie Balmert

FAIRFIELD – City leaders here have decided to ban all aspects of the medical marijuana business – from its cultivation, processing, dispensing and testing.

The decision comes less than a month before the state begins accepting applications for marijuana cultivators, as rules and regulations are being drafted by state leaders.

“I don’t think we have to look too far to see why we don’t want this,’’ said Vice Mayor Bill Woeste, during a council-manager briefing. “I’m all for not doing it.”

Lt. Ken Gerold said police are most concerned about any dispensaries that would locate in the city, worrying about burglaries and robberies.

He said allowing parts of the medical marijuana business in the city might also be sending a confusing message to the public.

“We try to dissuade people from (using marijuana),’’ Gerold said of police. “It sends a mixed message.”

Last June Gov. John Kasich signed a bill legalizing medical marijuana, making Ohio the 25th state to approve its use. Dispensary sales will begin in September 2018 to those who have a recommendation from a licensed physician and have a state identification card.

The law allows for several forms of marijuana to be sold, including edibles, oils, patches and vaporizing, but it does not allow the plant to be smoked or grown by the patient.

Marijuana can only be used for 21 medical conditions including cancer, epilepsy, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, traumatic brain injury, glaucoma, Crohn’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, and post-traumatic stress disorder.

City leaders had the option of putting a moratorium on any aspect of the marijuana business or allowing some parts of the business in the city, but decided against it.

City law director John Clemmons said a ban was “cleaner” than a moratorium, which have been challenged. Bans are permitted by law, and can be reversed in the future should council decide to do so in the future.

Council directed staff to prepare legislation for its April 24 meeting that would ban the cultivation, processing, dispensing and testing of marijuana in the city.

Doing so would make the city the second Butler County community to ban the industry. Middletown did so in February.

Moratoriums have been issued in Liberty, Ross, and Fairfield townships, while Hamilton has banned dispensaries in the city.

The Ohio Medical Marijuana Control Program’s website – www.MedicalMarijuana.ohio.gov – was created to inform the public about the program and provide updates.

Read or Share this story: http://cin.ci/2opqcHS