|Graphic: Medical Marijuana Blog|
The City Council of Portland, Maine has unanimously agreed to include a medical marijuana dispensary in the city’s business zoning ordinance.
Three companies have been selected by the state Department of Health to dispense cannabis to authorized patients in Maine. The state-licensed dispensaries will be in six locations around the state, including downtown Portland, reports Amanda Hill at WLBZ2.
The state of Maine has agreed to allow Northeast Patients Group to open dispensaries in Portland, Thomaston, Augusta or Waterville, and Hermon.
The group is looking at a number of locations in Portland, now that the zoning ordinance allows it to open a dispensary within the business 2, 3, and 7 zones of the city.
One key location under discussion is the former location of a Key Bank on the corner of Congress and St. John Streets, but one concern is that it’s too tight an area to accommodate a lot of traffic.
Let’s think for a moment about just how perfect and emblematic is that, people — banks going out of business, and dispensaries moving into their vacated buildings!
Another concern with the Congress/St John location is that it’s within 500 feet of the Deliverance Center, a church that holds classes for children and rehabilitation sessions for drug and alcohol abusers.
As with any conventional pharmacy, there is potential for the dispensary to get robbed, but Becky DeKeuster, executive director of Northeast Patients Group, said a security guard will be posted on-site 24 hours a day.
Applicants seeking to open prospective dispensaries in two of Maine’s districts, York County and Washington & Hancock counties, didn’t score high enough on the state questionnaire to qualify.
Prospective dispensary operators with low scores will get another chance; they can make changes and apply again through August 20.
Northeast Patients Group said it hopes to have dispensaries up and running before December 31.