Dover NJ approves prescription for recreational marijuana dispensaries

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DOVER – Cannabis companies will be allowed to operate in the city under new regulations approved at Tuesday’s council of aldermen meeting.

The unanimously approved 15-page ordinance establishes zoning codes and licensing requirements for recreational marijuana dispensaries. It also sets up a procedure for requesting the opening of a dispensary in town.

“A lot of people participated in this ordinance,” Alderman Eddie Correa said. “We believe [this] is a comprehensive and very comprehensive bill. We think it includes a lot of elements for applicants and has always put our community first. “

Last year, voters made New Jersey the 13th state to legalize recreational marijuana, and Gov. Phil Murphy signed a law in February that allows individual cities to regulate commerce within their borders. borders.

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The ordinance amends the city’s zoning code to allow recreational and medical dispensaries. Officials will only grant two licenses at a time, but they put no limit on the number of licenses granted to micro cannabis companies. According to the ordinance, cannabis micro-businesses must have an area of ​​2,500 square feet and have a maximum of 10 employees.

“We don’t want companies to come and take over here,” cannabis advocate Christian Velasquez said at Tuesday’s meeting. “We want the cannabis industry in Dover to be made up of micro cannabis companies owned by the people who live here in Dover.”

Businesses are permitted in the city’s general shopping district along McFarlan Street, before Morris Street, and in the industrial area along Richboynton Road and Clinton Street.

In addition to a long list of questions and prerequisites included in the application, applicants must also obtain a state license. The state requires that those applying for a license obtain approval of a location and city before applying to the New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Commission.

“This is very safe, but at the same time very socially oriented and socially responsible legislation that will create local jobs,” Correa said. “At the same time, it will bring our city in line with current trends in this new industry to come.”

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There is a $ 2,000 non-refundable claim with an annual fee of $ 5,000 for growers, manufacturers, wholesalers and distributors. Micro-enterprises will pay half. Retailers must pay an annual fee of $ 10,000 and those who serve as delivery companies must pay $ 2,500 per year. According to state law, 2% of all sales from the dispensary will go to the city.

Legalization won more than two-thirds of the vote statewide in 2020. In Dover, 66% of voters approved the measure. After more than half of New Jersey voters adopted adult recreational marijuana use, the state gave municipalities until mid-August, six months from official legalization of Murphy in February, to decide whether they would allow sales within their borders or pass an ordinance. to ban it.

In April, the Dover Aldermen Council introduced an ordinance temporarily banning marijuana sales and businesses in the city to give members time to develop rules and regulations. The Council’s order will come into effect next year.

Jessie Gomez is a local reporter for DailyRecord.com and NorthJersey.com. For unlimited access to the most important news from your local community, please subscribe or activate your digital account today.

Email: [email protected]

Twitter: @jessiereport



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