City of Berkley Plans to Accept Marijuana Applications in 2020
(City of Berkley, June 22, 2019)
The Berkley City Council took the first steps Monday toward approving a temporary extension that will effectively “opt in” Berkley at the end of the year to begin accepting applications for recreational and medical marijuana businesses.
The extension prevents marijuana businesses from opening in Berkley before an adequate regulatory framework is put into place. Initially, the City Council understood the State of Michigan did not plan to accept recreational marijuana applications before December 2019. However, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has accelerated the review process and recently announced the State plans to accept applications as early as September 2019.
The City Council approved a first reading of the ordinance extension at the June 17th meeting. A second and final reading of the ordinance is scheduled for the July 1st meeting. If the City Council did not approve a temporary extension, the State may begin to issue licenses for marijuana businesses, within 90 days of application, which under the City’s current zoning regulations may locate wherever commercial businesses are permitted in the City.
By agreeing to the extension, Berkley Mayor Dan Terbrack said the City is on track to accept applications beginning in January 2020.
“Our intent is to permit marijuana facilities in the City of Berkley,” Mayor Terbrack said. “This extension will provide us with the additional time needed to make sure we have the proper tools in place to ensure these businesses operate successfully in a way that promotes public safety and upholds our community character and values, that our residents are comfortable with.”
City Manager Matt Baumgarten also presented the City Council with two draft ordinances that address licensing and zoning requirements for marijuana facilities. The City Council held a town hall meeting and conducted several surveys before moving ahead with its decision to allow recreational and medical marijuana facilities. The City’s website has a page dedicated to the topic.