Becket hearing on marijuana bylaw Wednesday at 6 pm
By Patricia LeBoeuf, The Berkshire Eagle
BECKET — The town hasn’t finished hashing out marijuana.
Voters did not pass any proposed marijuana-related articles at a special town meeting March 6, according to draft meeting minutes.
But residents will again vote on the issue at the annual town meeting, specifically a bylaw regulating marijuana establishments in town.
The Planning Board will hear feedback at a public hearing Wednesday, 6 p.m., on the proposed marijuana bylaw, which would prescribe special permit requirements for licensed marijuana establishments in town.
After any changes are made, the bylaw will be finalized and put on the annual town meeting warrant, said Select Board Chairman William Elovirta.
“[This] is a next step,” he said.
Residents voted down two proposed moratoriums at the special town meeting, one regarding recreational marijuana establishments and one on medical marijuana treatment centers.
Both articles required a two-thirds majority.
The warrant proposed a temporary moratorium on the use of land or structures for recreational marijuana establishments or medical marijuana treatment centers until Dec. 31, 2018.
The recreational marijuana moratorium would have been lifted if the town adopted applicable zoning bylaw amendments before that date.
Voters also declined to pass an amendment to the town betterment bylaw that would have prohibited public consumption of marijuana or THC, the drug’s active ingredient.
Residents were concerned that the amendments could potentially apply to marijuana consumed on private property.
“It was a little confusing,” Elovirta said. “It wasn’t quite clear.”
The intent of the bylaw was to ban consumption on public property, he said.
The bylaw could be back on the agenda at the annual town meeting, as the Select Board plans to consider amending it to address concerns brought up at the special town meeting, he said.
“That’s our hope,” he said. “To rework it and put it on for the annual town meeting.”
The bylaw amendment would have forbidden smoking,