- Associated Press - Wednesday, September 17, 2014

COTTAGE GROVE, Minn. (AP) - A company recently founded by members of the Bachman family has proposed the establishment of a 24-acre medical marijuana farm in Cottage Grove.

LeafLine Labs LLC is seeking approval for the industrial pot operation from the state Department of Health and the Cottage Grove City Council. The company could be producing marijuana at the proposed facility as early as next July, and eventually distributing its product to customers across the state, the St. Paul Pioneer Press (https://bit.ly/1AS625t ) reported.

City administrator Ryan Schroeder said he supports the proposal because it could bring up to 150 jobs to Cottage Grove.

“I see it as a plus for the city,” he said.

A public hearing on the proposal is scheduled for Wednesday, and then the City Council is expected to vote on a site plan and a conditional use permit for the LeafLine operation.

Although the Bachman family owns Bachman’s Floral Gift and Garden stores throughout the Twin Cities, the company would not be affiliated with the pot farm. The Bachmans have formed a partnership with executives of Theraplant LLC, a Connecticut-based company that legally grows marijuana.

A medical marijuana law was passed by the state Legislature in May, allowing an estimated 5,000 eligible residents to obtain and use pot for medical purposes, according to the Health Department. The state is now accepting applications for pot farms through Oct. 3, and will ultimately choose two by December. Each facility will open four dispensaries throughout the state in which to sell the medical marijuana.

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Information from: St. Paul Pioneer Press, https://www.twincities.com

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