“It sends a message to the community that marijuana use is still illegal,” she said. “It’s a harmful, dangerous drug, and we take it seriously in our community. We don’t want marijuana smoking to be modeled for our children on our town beach.”
At their April Town Meeting, Wayland voters will consider both an increased fine as well as zoning restrictions.
Bruce Bedrick, the CEO of Kind Clinics and Medbox, which has set up an office in Natick, said there’s nothing to fear from medical marijuana.
“This isn’t a drug-driven industry, this is a patient-driven industry,” he said. “The patients and these dispensaries don’t attract a bad crowd. There’s no drug dealing. There’s no crime.”
Several towns, including Needham and Wellesley, have discussed proposing a moratorium to provide extra time for devising local limits or other regulations.
But the Needham Planning Board voted not to sponsor a moratorium on medical marijuana dispensaries and cultivation that was requested by the Board of Selectmen. Instead, the selectmen were scheduled to vote this week on whether to sponsor the moratorium themselves.
In April, Wellesley Town Meeting will vote on a proposed moratorium, to run until June 2014, on medical marijuana dispensaries as well as on a measure prohibiting the public consumption of marijuana.
During its annual meeting last month, the Massachusetts Municipal Association held a session on medical marijuana that was well attended by local officials, said executive director Geoffrey Beckwith.
“We’re advising them to not wait but to go through a methodical process and make a local decision,” he said. “The attorney general, we hope, will recognize that the communities should have the right to say no.”