The chief executive of a company that plans to set up a medical marijuana dispensary in Newton has formed a committee opposing a proposed ban on recreational marijuana sales in the city.
On Nov. 6, voters in the city will decide on two ballot questions: One asks for an outright ban on recreational marijuana sales; the other would allow between two and four recreational shops in Newton.
Medical dispensaries would not be affected by the ballot questions. In Newton, Cypress Tree Management, Inc. and New England Cannabis Corp. seek to open medical dispensaries, according to the state Department of Public Health.
On Monday night, the Newton City Council voted to allow Cypress Tree Management to open a medical dispensary on Eliot Street, according to the City Council clerk’s office.
Cypress Tree Management’s chief executive, Victor Chiang, formed a ballot question committee to oppose the proposed ban. Respect the Vote, Newton, was formed for the “advocacy for the legal sale of cannabis to adults” in Newton, according to a Sept. 28 filing with the city clerk’s office.
The ballot question committee joins two others already formed around the marijuana issue: Opt Out Newton, which seeks a ban on recreational marijuana sales, and Responsible First Step for Newton, which opposes the ban.
Garden Remedies Inc., Newton’s one medical marijuana dispensary, also weighed in on the debate, as it seeks permission to sell recreational marijuana in the city. The City Council on Monday approved Garden Remedies’ request, provided voters do not enact a ban against marijuana shops in November, according to the City Council clerk’s office.
“We believe that legalizing adult use of marijuana will result in fewer people in our community turning to illegal sellers and more dangerous drugs,” Karen Munkacy, president and chief executive of Garden Remedies, said in a statement to the Globe Oct 1.
“It means cannabis will be safe, pure, regulated, and traceable, and our community will benefit from the many health benefits of this safe, natural medication, as well as revenue, jobs, and community outreach from the cannabis industry.”
“We hope through education we can stop the stigma around cannabis consumption and address the concerns and questions of those in the community who are unsure or opposed,” Munkacy said.
John Hilliard can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org