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Framingham Wants To Limit Where Marijuana Businesses Could Operate

A proposal, that will be presented to Framingham Selectmen Tuesday, would only allow a marijuana dispensary to operate along Route 9 between the Natick line and Dinsmore Avenue. Any proposal would need a vote of Town Meeting.

Tuesday night, Selectmen will hear about a plan to "limit the location of marijuana dispensaries" in town, according to Framingham Town Manager Bob Halpin.

Hapin, in his report to Framingham Selectmen, indicated that the working group of town officials plan to propose to "designate a portion of the Route 9 corridor east of Dinsmore (Avenue) to the Natick line" as an area for a potential dispensary.

Halpin, in his report, indicated that area would be the most suitable location, due to its high rent and public visibility.

It is unknown if any dispensary is interested in opening in Framingham. The town was the first in the Commonwealth to have a medical practice completed devoted to medical marijuana open in Janaury.

"To the extent that one emerged ... it would at least be in a visible, high traffic location and would operate with a higher degree of public scrutiny than other locations," said Halpin in his report.

The Framingham Planning Board is fine-tuning the boundaries of the proposed new zoning district and the "working group" is scheduled to make a presentation to Framingham Selectmen tomorrow night, Feb. 5.

A public hearing is planned for March and eventually Annual Town Meeting will be asked to vote on any zoning proposal.

Gwen B. February 04, 2013 at 07:28 AM
It will become a ganja mega center. They have a large client demand thanks to SMOC. Gonna be exciting to watch. I hope they include it in the "Choose Framingham" brochure and revitalization project. A big pot leaf on the front is very eye catching. LOL
William LaBarge February 04, 2013 at 06:24 PM
I'd be interested in seeing what the consequence would be if Town Meeting does not pass this article. I suspect that legally, the pot shop would be considered to be a pharmacy, thus the dispensary would legally be allowed to open where any pharmacy are allowed to open. For that matter, in an ideal world, I prefer to see medical marijuana to be sold by pharmacies. In the real world, most pharmacies wont touch medical marijuana given the current Federal Laws that outlaw marijuana for any purpose, thus those pharmacies wont take a chance with the Feds. I want the pot shop to look as boring as what a typical medical facility look. No flashy appearance, especially with psychedelic coloring depicting the big marijuana plant or parts thereof. If pot should become legal for recreational use, then Im fine for the retailers to use flashy psychedelic coloring, etc. to promote their products. What I will object to is for the Town Government to make it impossible for medical marijuana dispensaries to open within the Town. For the time being, I prefer to see that medical marijuana be delivered by courier to the patients who have the prescription for marijuana. This allow medical marijuana patients their privacy as well as keep the dispensaries hopefully out of sight from the public at-large. William LaBarge Town Meeting Member, Precinct 16 Chair I am speaking only for myself and not necessarily for anyone else.
Susan Petroni (Editor) February 04, 2013 at 06:39 PM
William: Thanks for posting. You raise some interesting points, which I hope will be addressed in the presentation to Selectmen Tuesday night. If, not you and your fellow Town Meeting members will have time to debate, craft and eventually vote on a bylaw, that will serve the best interest of the town.
John Sullivan February 05, 2013 at 01:43 AM
Framingham should follow the lead of other towns and BAN dispensaries from operating within town limits. The town has enough problems already. If you think the concentration of social service agencies is bad, wait until we become the destination for everyone wanting MJ in MW.
eleanor February 06, 2013 at 03:32 PM
I agree with the other person. Let's put in in a building right across the street from the police station, or Town Hall, so it can be monitored all the time.
Geoffrey Froner February 07, 2013 at 03:13 AM
It doesnt work like that. Its for people with medical conditions that could be helped by marijuana. These include glaucoma, chronic pain, eating difficulty because of chemo, and other conditions. Marijuana has been enjoyed by people for thousands of years. In the U.S., since 1937, there's been a war against this plant. Nevertheless, people continue to use it. Isn't it about time for a more realistic idea to prevail? Is possession and use so detrimental that people have been sent to prison? Isnt it about time? Geoffrey
Geoffrey Froner February 07, 2013 at 03:16 AM
Really? Why? It's for medical conditions that could be helped. Would you like all pharmacies to be monitored because some people get Valium or Codein there? How about monitoring Dunkin Doughnuts for obese people? geoffrey
Jack February 07, 2013 at 03:37 AM
I agree with Eleanor. Geoffrey, it is not for the people who really need it medically, but the police need to watch for those who would try to steal it, breakin in, attack those who come out of a facility with it. I for one would support it located in a very visible location.
Geoffrey Froner February 08, 2013 at 01:09 AM
Even though it is known that people who go in and come out of banks likely will be carrying money; or pharmacies have customers who might be carrying drugs, we don't locate them next to police stations. It is more likely that thieves will go after the bank itself, or the pharmacy, just like a dispensary would be at possible risk. The message of having the dispensary located next to a police station is that the customers are the ones being monitored. The real solution would be to make marijuana and marijuana seeds legal. The price would soon tumble to the actual value down from the present astronomical artificially inflated price ($500 an ounce). The drug gangs would no longer be profitable and this would save lives. Research would take place, which has been stymied in the present environment, and I believe this would reveal very valuable knowledge. Win-Win. If we allow alcohol and tobacco to be sold openly and everywhere, two drugs that are responsible for hundreds of thousands of deaths, misery, auto accidents, etc., etc, then why is marijuana so penalized, restricted, criminalized? Think about who benefits financially.
Jeffrey Rivard February 08, 2013 at 03:21 AM
Well, opiates and other drugs are far more addictive and I would suspect people outside of a pharmacy that dispenses with those than with marijuana. I don't think I'm ready for a pharmacy that doesn't have cosmetics, food items, lots of candies and sweets, household maintenance items, and photography and also have medicinal marijuana. It just seems strange. All the pot heads will be in their looking for their munchies, toilet repairs, items to cover up the smell, and party photos. Not much of a change from the pharmacy next to me. Has anybody seen the stock tickers HEMP and MJNA? They've gone up!
Cobias Maximus February 09, 2013 at 12:08 AM
Gwen... Ganja mega center? Really? Let's not pretend that for anyone who wants pot, it's as accessible as grabbing a pack of cigarettes at store Tedeschi's. And please don't bring up the demographic of downtown as an excuse because the North side of Framingham and other affluent neighborhoods are just as saturated with just as much or more marijauna. The legalization and regulation of Marijauna is no longer a prospect, but an inevitability... The time to capitalize on the Marijauna abolition is now, and why not be at the forefront of change and take advantage of the obvious directing in which this country is going? This is an opportunity, not a hindrance. The economic revenue would do well to keep us in the green during these trying times and it's a chance we cannot afford to capitalize on!!! (The pot leaf on the brochure isn't a bad idea either Gwen...I think it's Genius!)
Geoffrey Froner February 09, 2013 at 11:11 PM
Its interesting to consider what people consider normative. Although tobacco is far more toxic than heroin, you can buy it easily in nearly every city in the U.S. Is there a label for tobacco smokers? Is everyone who smokes pot a "pot head"? Do they have the same characteristics as every other person who smokes pot? You also can, if you are over 18 go into a gun store and purchase a weapon that was explicitly made for killing animals including humans. The point of this disquisition is that our culture has very disturbing values. Considering the legalization of pot, only for the purpose of alleviating some medical conditions, is a good way to think about what are reasonable values to hold and live by.
William LaBarge February 10, 2013 at 12:31 AM
Geoffrey Froner: Heroin is far more dangerous in short-term use. There is such thing as physical addiction insofar as when the abuser goes to withdraw from it, the addicted goes into excruciating pain that don't go away till the addicted gets the fix. Furthermore, there is such thing as receiving a fatal dose of it. On the other hand, tobacco, as more addictive than heroin, can't smoke a fatal dose unless that tobacco is doped up with additional nicotine. Even with the tobacco mildly doped with nicotine, the tobacco smoker don't get a fatal dose of nicotine. On the other hand, when the tobacco smoker happen to be taking prescription nicotine, smoking the tobacco can give that smoker a dangerous level of nicotine. Back to medical marijuana: as a Town Meeting Member, will object to any and every method that will get Framingham to either stall or stop a pharmacy that dispense medical marijuana from opening up within Framingham. We, the People in Massachusetts, voted for the referendum to see that medical marijuana be made legally available to patients who may or will benefit from medical marijuana. I believe that Framingham voters also voted in favor of that referendum. Beside, I never have ever heard of a case where someone ever smoked a fatal dose of marijuana. ----Continued---
William LaBarge February 10, 2013 at 12:31 AM
Furthermore, the excuse of the fact that some children 'may' illegally obtain medical marijuana should NEVER be the reason why pharmacy that dispense medical marijuana to be denied a permit to operate in the Town of Framingham. That excuse can also be used to keep pharmacy from dispensing any and all medicines that children have illegally obtained.

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