Medical marijuana ordinance change is in effect in Grove and some aren’t happy about it

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A medical marijuana ordinance change is in effect in the city of Grove.

It’s a controversial topic with some being in favor and against a city ordinance passed last September. The original measure enforced stricter regulations than state rules for medical marijuana businesses, growers, dispensaries, and processors in city limits – which some businesses had issue with. So now, a new medical marijuana ordinance within Grove city limits is addressing those issues and keeping the city out of several threatened lawsuits.

Bob Brogdon, owner of GB Herbal Wellness operates a business right outside of Grove city limits. He has been in communication will other dispensaries in the city and says the original ordinance has caused troubles for those in the field.

“They restricted locations to certain zoning areas. They restricted locations in distance from other dispensaries,” says Bob Brogdon.

City of Grove officials say the only guideline Oklahoma gives is medical marijuana businesses can’t operate within a thousand feet from a school. So, without strict guidelines being implemented, city leaders decided to create their own ordinance, but that didn’t sit well with those in the business — some even threatening to sue the city of Grove.

“We took it because it was open ended we felt that since it was quiet on that it didn’t say you could and it didn’t say you couldn’t. We put some of those things in there and a lot of those things in there reflect what’s in the ordinances that pertain to liquor stores and bars,” says Bill Keefer.

“The rules and regulations came out late so once it was legalized and people got their license they had in some cases purchased property ahead of time, so they could put their dispensary in it,” says Bob Brogdon.

Due to the advice from an attorney, the Grove city council has amended the ordinance to match state rules and regulations. And now looks to the upcoming Oklahoma legislative session with high hopes to help cities better regulate it.

“We’re hope that the state takes a strong look at the provisions of State Question 788 and provides the city some ability to regulate and administer this whole process and procedure,” says Bill Keefer.

Keefer says he wouldn’t be surprised if the existing ordinance changes again in the near future. He advocates that community members voice their concerns to legislatures who can spark change.

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