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Weed Rush: How Saleen Coping with the Influx of Marijuana Business Proposals

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SALENE, Michigan — Since licensing recreational marijuana, the city of Saline has been inundated with interest from retailers.

In fact, City Hall is “overwhelmed” with applications, said City Councilman Jim Dell’Orco.

Officials have even decided to temporarily suspend acceptance of new applications while they smooth out some wrinkles in the process, eventually increasing the original 250-foot buffer between pharmacies to 1,000 feet. voted for

“I think that was probably the only flaw that was in the original ordinance,” said Saleen Mayor Brian Marr. “What we fear is that we will be oversaturated with marijuana outlets in Saleen City.”

There are currently six proposed marijuana locations. Old Mickey’s Daily Twist at 751 West Michigan Ave., Cam Dancing at 465 East Michigan Ave., Zacks Auto Wash at 660 East Michigan Ave., Octapharma Plasma at 813 Michigan Ave., 7608 E. Michigan Ave. and Zippy near Tractor Supply Co. Lot 20A, the business park lot next to Auto Wash.

“We knew there would be a lot of interest because the players in this business are doing cash transactions,” Dell’Orco said.

read more: Saline opens doors to recreational marijuana business within city limits

road to weed rush

Saline first voted to allow medical marijuana in June 2021. Then, in March 2022, the city council voted to allow recreational marijuana businesses in the city.

Rather than cap marijuana permits, Saline decided to limit business to specific zoning districts in commercial areas outside downtown, using buffers to limit the number of retailers. This made it even more attractive for future business.

Sean Mansoor, attorney and owner of Rush Cannabis, said one of the reasons the city was “charming” was the lack of caps.

“I commend Saleen for creating the ordinance…it limits the number of places by essentially zoning the places,” Mansour said. There are a lot of them, but they are so arbitrary that they almost always lead to litigation.”

Dell’Orco said there are several reasons to allow entertainment retailers in the city beyond giving voters what they want and generating tax revenue.

One of Dell’Orco’s key reasons was to remain in control of how marijuana is regulated within the city, rather than giving others the opportunity to control it.

“Essentially, people who want to launch these businesses with lobbies and employees are in the driver’s seat,” he said. “If they make their own proposal on the ballot and the voters approve it, the city will have significant control over the zoning, licensing and regulation of these businesses if we do not choose to stand in front of it. You will lose to

Not only that, Dell’Orco said he also expects retailers to renovate and redevelop vacant homes and old buildings, though some applicants have indicated that’s not always the case.

“It’s happened to some extent, but what we’ve learned in the application process is, do they want to buy a completely vacant lot and build from scratch, or do they want to buy an existing business,” Dell’Orco said. increase.

Mickey’s Daily Twist

One of the main places that highlighted this was Mickey’s Dairy Twist. There was a community backlash when residents learned that their beloved local ice cream shop was poised to become the city’s first pharmacy.

Rush Cannabis is set to fill the original site of the longtime Saline ice cream shop after receiving final approval of the site plan.

Mansoor said he has seen pharmacies redevelop old buildings that other retailers wouldn’t touch. He said Mickey’s Daily Twist is an example of a building that could use transformation. said.

The dispensary has another location in Hazel Park, which opened in April. Rush Cannabis hopes to open a saline store by Thanksgiving and become the first dispensary in town, Mansour said. I am aiming for

read more: No more Mickey’s Dairy Twist ice cream, but marijuana shops plan to staple saline

The future of marijuana in saline

Saline City Councilman Kevin Camero Slack isn’t surprised by the number of applications the city is receiving.

“We seemingly have a wealth of applications … but that doesn’t mean they will all be approved, even those that they can lease or build. There is none.

Despite the number of filings, Maar isn’t worried about the city being overrun with marijuana or all the dispensaries going on. He predicts that in the city he will have 2-3, maybe he will have 4 clinics.

“In this particular situation, I think the market will eventually correct itself if it becomes saturated with saline formulations,” he said.

As marijuana continued to develop in Saleen, Mar turned to surrounding areas such as Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti where recreational marijuana retailers worked. He encourages city residents to reach out with any questions or concerns.

“Look around Washtenau County,” he said. “There are countless examples of good, engaging, stable communities that have worked in this type of industry, but without compromising the quality of life of any particular community.”

Read more about this topic: Protests against day care clinics prompt moratorium on saline-allowed marijuana

Aiming to avoid ‘our corner’ pharmacies, Saleen changes marijuana rules

Saline sets the framework for the city’s medical marijuana business

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