Fees determined for medical marijuana

By Danielle Coots - For the News-Current

BEAVERCREEK — During a special city council meeting recently, the Beavercreek held an emergency meeting to discuss changes to the ordinance for medical marijuana to place fees for dispensaries while waiting for final decisions of the State in the coming months.

Beavercreek officials chose to take measures to amend the current ordinance to include fee provisions that would apply to any applicant wanting to open shop with regard to medical marijuana in the city limits.

Ordinance 18-11, has been amended to include language regarding fees for zoning purposes, operational license, and renewal. This ordinance includes definitions regarding to medical marijuana, notifications of standards, suspension and revocation terms.

Some of the reasons for suspension and revocation would be to violate requirements of reporting to the police theft of losses of more than $100 in product or money. Penalties could result in a charge of a misdemeanor of the first degree.

“I think the city would be better off to charge a fixed fee rather than a percentage fee,” Beavercreek Law Director Stephen McHugh said. “Also, this ordinance should be approved sooner than later.”

In the wake of the passing of Ohio House Bill 523 in September 2016, which allows a medical marijuana program in Ohio that entails cultivating, processing, dispensing and testing laboratories, the City of Beavercreek has been paving the way to develop provisions and guidelines within the Ohio laws and the needs of the Beavercreek community.

The goal is to have a functional system in place by Sept. 8. This ordinance is the city’s way of being able to manage and control these operations within the standards of the law.

“Other communities are charging similar fees. Some communities are implementing fees that are higher and some lower, but we feel these fees are reasonable,” McHugh said. “This ordinance is specifically for the medical marijuana business.”

The fees that will be applied begin at the application phase, called the provision license. This is a non-refundable fee of $250. Once the application is approved, the applicant needs to go through the zoning process for Conditional Use, which is $250. When granted, a Local Operating license, which is $5,000.

When after a year in business, but before 90 days before the year mark, the applicant needs to review the operating license, which is $15,000.

By passing the ordinance as an emergency, the fees can be implemented immediately. The council passed this ordinance without opposition.

By Danielle Coots

For the News-Current