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Judge rules for Springfield pot shop in permit dispute with city

Julio Cortez/Associated Press

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. — A Superior Court judge has ruled that the city of Springfield must allow a recreational marijuana shop at the site of a now-closed burger bar.

Hampden Superior Court Judge Michael Callan said in his ruling Tuesday that the city council’s denial of a special permit for the shop last year was “arbitrary and capricious” and had “no rational basis,” according to Masslive.com.

The judge rejected the arguments of some councilors who said the permit would allow Insa to have a monopoly, or that the site was inappropriate.

Callan gave the council a 10-day deadline to approve the special permit.

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Jeffrey Poindexter, a lawyer for Insa, said the business owners are “really excited at this point to be able to open and see the city get much needed money.”

Council President Justin Hurst, who was among the councilors voting against the permit, said the council will comply with the ruling.

“We lost and it’s time to move forward,” Hurst said.