Bergen County

Half Of New Jersey Towns Are Set To Ban Cannabis After Statewide Legalization Vote

Half Of New Jersey Towns Are Set To Ban Cannabis After Statewide Legalization Vote

Almost half of New Jersey towns are faced with an August 21 deadline to decide whether to opt-out of cannabis operations. If they opt-out, they can change their minds at any time. If they opt-in, they’re locked in for five years.

On one hand, allowing cannabis in opens the door to marijuana retail, wholesale, and/or manufacturing facilities —and as much as 2% tax and licensing fees. On the other hand is concern about the potential effect on residential neighborhoods, children, and general NIMBY-ism.

Despite voting “yes” on marijuana legalization, Union City Mayor Brian Stack is stopping marijuana operations from opening in his town.

One New Jersey councilman —a medical marijuana patient— opposed opening stores in his town, because it would be a “smokefest on the beaches and boardwalk,” while another local mayor said residents “didn’t vote for 17-year-olds to become drug users, they didn’t vote for some overtaxed product so some MS-13 gangbanger can come in here and undercut” the legal market.

In Bergen County, 10 contiguous towns jointly decided to ban cannabis stores in part because they’d be located near residential neighborhoods and “places of public accommodation frequented by the public, including children.”

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