By 1802Blockhouse

At its meeting earlier this month, Ontario City Council of Ontario approved a six-month hold on marijuana activities as the city awaits the regulations coming from the state of Ohio.

 In the meantime, this is an overview of that passed measure:

Overview of Ordinance No. 24-05

Title and Purpose

  • Ordinance No.: 24-05
  • Objective: To impose a six-month moratorium on the acceptance, consideration, and/or granting of any applications for local licensing approval, and any zoning, occupancy, or other permits relating to marijuana cultivators, processors, or retail dispensaries within the City of Ontario, and to declare an emergency for immediate implementation.

Background and Justification

  • Legal Context: Following the passage of Issue 2 in the November 2023 election, recreational marijuana use was legalized in Ohio, with certain restrictions still being determined.
  • Council’s Stance: Due to the ongoing determination of regulations, a six-month period is deemed reasonable for the City Council to gather necessary information for addressing marijuana use and regulation within the city. The council reserves the right to extend the moratorium if regulations are not finalized within the specified period.

Provisions of the Ordinance

  • Section 1: Imposes a temporary moratorium on processing and granting applications related to marijuana businesses.
  • Section 2: Specifies the moratorium’s duration as six months from the ordinance’s passage, with the possibility of extension by the City Council.
  • Section 3: Exempts research related to marijuana conducted at state universities, academic medical centers, or private research organizations from the moratorium. Confirms that existing criminal laws on marijuana remain in effect.
  • Section 4: Notes the absence of existing requests for marijuana-related local licensing, zoning, or permits with vested rights under the moratorium.
  • Section 5: Ensures that all actions concerning the passage of the ordinance were conducted openly and in compliance with legal requirements.

Emergency Declaration and Effective Date

  • Emergency Measure: Declared as necessary for the public peace, health, and safety, and to allow the city adequate time to consider regulations for marijuana-related businesses before receiving any requests or zoning approvals.
  • Effective Date: Immediate, upon passage, to facilitate timely regulatory consideration and public protection.

Image by Rex Medlen from Pixabay

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