Marijuana is the talk of many towns this week
Cannabis seems to be on everyone’s agenda as Massachusetts waits for the ballot measure legalizing recreational marijuana to take effect this week.
With medical marijuana already legal, Somerville residents will learn about a proposed dispensary in Davis Square at a community meeting Monday. Sage Cannabis wants to open it in the basement of a building at 240 Elm St., but needs both state and local permits.
In Whitman, selectmen may decide Tuesday whether to give their blessing to a medical marijuana growing facility on Route 18 proposed by Fresh Meadow Farm of Carver. But Town Administrator Frank Lynam stressed that it would be for growing only — any proposal for a dispensary would receive “a hostile greeting” in town.
And on Wednesday in West Bridgewater, a special Town Meeting will consider a temporary moratorium on recreational marijuana businesses. The measure would ban the use of land or buildings in town for such establishments through June 30, 2018. Ashland passed a moritorium of its own last month.
Which gets us to Thursday, when the recreational marijuana measure approved by more than 1.7 million Bay State voters in November is supposed to take effect. Secretary of State William F. Galvin said he will submit official results of the ballot initiative to the Governor’s Council for certification on Wednesday, just in time.
If all goes as planned, possessing, using, and home-growing marijuana will be legal for adults 21 and over on Thursday. But marijuana use will remain prohibited in public places and where tobacco smoking is not allowed.
Retail stores won’t be able to start selling marijuana for recreational use until January 2018. Some state officials have argued that even more time is needed to create a new bureaucracy to regulate and police recreational marijuana sales.