Thomaston approves moratorium on marijuana businesses, Waterbury looks to follow – WFSB

WATERBURY, CT (WFSB) — As Connecticut navigates the legalization of recreational marijuana, some towns and cities are asking for more time.

Moratoriums have been passed, or are in the works, banning businesses from setting up shop.

As Connecticut navigates the legalization of recreational marijuana, some towns and cities are asking for more time.

For Waterbury, they want to take the time to see how other cities handle implementation.

“Not only in Connecticut, but other cities and towns in states that have already legalized marijuana, particularly in New England, and see what the impacts are on those cities and towns on the quality of life and things like that,” said Waterbury Mayor Neil O’Leary.

On Wednesday night, the zoning commission scheduled a public hearing for later this month. After that hearing, they will vote on the moratorium.

The day before recreational marijuana is legal in Connecticut, Waterbury could ban sales and cultivation within city limits.

The moratoriums impact the businesses, like the dispensaries and cultivation businesses that would grow marijuana. Those would be blocked from setting up shop within a city or town with a moratorium.

This wouldn’t impact possession, or where you’re now allowed to smoke.

While Waterbury is still looking into possibly enacting one, Thomaston’s Planning and Zoning Commission approved a six-month moratorium in June.

Right now, city leaders said they are looking to buy some time to figure out where these businesses can go.

Thomaston doesn’t have anything in their ordinances or regulations on marijuana businesses, so in these next six months they’ll be piecing that together.

That’s also what Waterbury wants to look at. They already have an idea on where these businesses could go, but the mayor said that opens the door to other considerations that he wants time to go over with the help of a moratorium.

“I just feel the residents of the city have expressed to me that they think it’s just a little bit too much too quick,” O’Leary said.

Prospects have contacted the Brass City as well.

O’Leary said there’s consensus for them not to be downtown, but it’s still up in the air where they could go.

That’s what he hopes a year-long moratorium could help figure out.

“if it goes into the outskirts of the city, or outside the central business district, how is it going to impact those neighborhoods? Pedestrian control, traffic control, the things that are pertinent,” O’Leary said.

Under the new law, recreational marijuana sales won’t start until 2022.

Waterbury’s public hearing has been set for July 28 at 7 p.m. on Zoom.

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