Taunton's first marijuana dispensary ready to bloom
Charles Winokoor Taunton Gazette Staff Reporter @cwinokoor
TAUNTON – The marijuana facility on Mozzone Boulevard will be the standard by which other such facilities in the country will be measured.
That’s the opinion of Matthew Harrison, who, with his brother Sean, is providing management and consulting advice to the non-profit group now developing a cultivation, processing and retail operation inside 30A Mozzone Boulevard.
“We didn’t rush into this,” said Matthew, 35, who called the still-evolving facility “amazing” and “one of a kind” in terms of its clean-room manufacturing specifications inside the 47,000-square-foot work space.
Harrison says he’s worked in the legal-marijuana-facility field since 2009 and has assisted in the procurement of operating licenses in Colorado, Illinois, Florida, Nevada and Maryland, as well as Massachusetts.
He says both he and his sibling Dean, 33, were hired by Commonwealth Alternative Care Inc., the nonprofit group that was previously issued a provisional license by the Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission, and which is now in the process of creating the grow-and-sell facility.
Mayor Thomas Hoye Jr. said he understands that the subject of marijuana facilities is still somewhat controversial.
But he points to the fact that voters, in 2012, statewide and in Taunton endorsed the use of medical marijuana, and four years later voted to allow production and sale of recreational marijuana.
Hoye said Commonwealth Alternative Care — which in 2016 was granted a special permit by the City Council for its hybrid grow-and-sell model — has donated money to local nonprofits such as the Boys and Girls Club, as well as the annual Lighting of the Green celebration.
“It speaks volumes about their character,” said Hoye. “They’ve really been a great partner.”
The Mozzone Boulevard facility, he said, with its job creation will provide “an economic stimulus to the area.”
John Greene, CAC’s community development