Health board strengthening local recreational marijuana regulations
By Paul Gately
The Bourne Board of Health in line-by-line review has amended, updated and strengthened its eight pages of recreational marijuana sales regulations, with more scrutiny due in May.
Voters at Special Town Meeting on March 26 voted down an article seeking to ban recreational marijuana, as well as an article seeking a blyaw change that would ban marijuana shops in town.
The local regulations build on state law evolving through the Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission. The amendments involve new definitions, fees for recreational pot sale licenses, the date for license renewal and the $500 cost involved that could climb higher with an attendant processing fee.
The regulations now govern “registered marijuana dispensaries” as well as “marijuana establishments.”
The opening and closing times for marijuana establishments have yet to be determined. That information will follow a session with public safety officials and selectmen, perhaps in a joint meeting.
The updated regulations stipulate that there will be no more than six recreational marijuana licenses issued in Bourne “at any given time.” Dispensaries and establishments are prohibited from using self-serving displays, vending machines, and non-residential roll-your-own machines.
Also, no person under the age of 21 will be permitted to enter an establishment with an operating license “except those persons in possession of a registration card demonstrating that the individual is a registered qualifying patient with the Medical Use of Marijuana Program, if the establishment is co-located with a medical marijuana treatment center.”
The board of health in May will address marijuana odor issues that appear to be evolving in area towns, including Plymouth. The board may require mitigation plans “for reducing odor and ensuring compliance with nuisance laws for certain types of marijuana-related businesses.”
Board of Health Chairman Kathy Peterson said the amended department regulations add references to the new Massachusetts