Birmingham prohibits marijuana businesses

Just because voters approved recreational marijuana on November 6, don't think you can open up a marijuana dispensary in downtown Birmingham.

Birmingham city commissioners voted 5-0, with commissioners Mark Nickita and Rackeline Hoff absent, to prohibit the marijuana establishments in Birmingham at their meeting on Monday, November 12.

City manager Joe Valentine said the city has been operating under the Medical Marijuana Facilities Licensing Act, PA 281 of 2016, where each community has to decide if they're going to allow or prohibit state-licensed marijuana establishments.

“Since that was adopted, the city has chosen to not opt in,” Valentine said. “Since the recent ballot initiative, cities have to prohibit it. We have provided an ordinance that these establishments would be prohibited in the city.”

“Hypothetically, if we don't move forward with this and an applicant wanted to set up an establishment in Birmingham, we wouldn't have to approve it, would we,” asked commissioner Andy Harris.

“It would go through the same channels as any other business application. If it's a retail business, we couldn't deny them,” Valentine responded.

“I think this would keep the status quo until we can learn more about the law,” commissioner Stuart Sherman said.

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