- Associated Press - Friday, July 29, 2016

KODIAK, Alaska (AP) - A group that advises the Kodiak Island Borough Assembly on marijuana regulations has decided to allow commercial pot growing in some residential areas.

The borough’s Marijuana Task Force met this week to discuss pot cultivation and approved a pathway for growers to begin operations on residential lots, The Kodiak Daily Mirror reported (https://bit.ly/2atcn5e).

Growers would be able to conduct business with a conditional use permit on residential lots of more than 20,000 square feet. Business owners could also have a limited marijuana cultivation license for a growing area of 500 square feet or less on a residential lot.

Neighbors would be allowed to weigh in through a public hearing and comment process before businesses receive the conditional use permit.

“You don’t want to make somebody that’s lived here in the community their whole life and is your neighbor uncomfortable because all of a sudden, you want to grow marijuana on residential property,” task force member Nick Troxell said.

Home growing operations are not allowed to create noises or smells that are detectable outside the property. They are also restricted to having only one person who does not live at the home working at the business.

The task force also discussed regulations Tuesday regarding the 500-foot buffer zone separating marijuana businesses from schools, jails and churches.

Sara Mason, director of the borough’s Community Development Department, asked the task force to clarify the regulation because the state law does not make it clear whether the buffer zone is a direct line or by a road or path.

Members of the task force agreed that measuring the most direct pedestrian path would be a logical approach.

The task force asked borough staff to draft an ordinance based on their recommendations to be reviewed by the borough’s assembly.


Information from: Kodiak (Alaska) Daily Mirror, https://www.kodiakdailymirror.com

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