Land-use changes sought for medical marijuana in Oak Creek

Town Board to consider applications at meeting tonight

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What: Oak Creek Town Board meeting

When: 7 p.m. today

Where: Oak Creek Town Hall, 129 Nancy Crawford Blvd., Oak Creek

Agenda items: Land-use changes for medical marijuana centers, discussion of a retaining wall for the Oak Creek Ice Rink, emergency ordinance for town bonds

— The Oak Creek Town Board will hear three requests for land-use changes at a meeting tonight, all for medical marijuana establishments.

That may be too many medical marijuana businesses for the town of less than 1,000 residents, Mayor Nikki Knoebel said.

According to the agenda, Skyler Hartman is asking to use 240 Arthur St. for a medical marijuana dispensary and commercial kitchen. Jacob Wise, owner of a medical marijuana dispensary in town, also is asking for an optional cultivation site for his dispensary at the same Arthur Street address. Rocky Mountain High Kitchens is asking for an optional location for its existing center and kitchen.

“In my mind, we would only need one bakery and one medical marijuana center in Oak Creek,” Knoebel said from Florida. She said she has been on vacation for the past week and has not had a chance to review the applications.

The town put itself in limbo waiting for the state to finalize medical marijuana laws, and now that they are in effect, allowing local governments to control medical marijuana centers, the town board will be faced with a decision about how to handle them.

The town’s original moratorium was intended to keep the businesses off of Main Street and out of the main business district, Knoebel said.

Now, the town can create more overarching rules if it decides to, or the town can address individual requests for land-use changes. The three requests went before the Planning Commission on Wednesday night, and recommendations from the commission will go to the board. Knoebel said the board could approve or deny any requests for land-use change and also could impose regulations.

Also at tonight’s meeting, the Town Board will discuss a park design for the Sierra View Homeowners Association, brought by Andy Benjamin, and will consider an approval of an emergency ordinance to issue bonds valued at $1.2 million for the wastewater treatment plant.

Comments

beentheredonethat 3 years, 9 months ago

oak creek the pot capital of colorado....congratulations for finally accomplishing something noteworthy.

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mmjPatient22 3 years, 9 months ago

Well, if the town of Oak Creek only needs one mmj dispensary and one mmj kitchen, then how many alcohol distribution businesses does it need? Is the Mayor really promoting a mmj monopoly in Oak Creek?

Oh, and pot capital of Colorado? You must not be familiar with other parts of the state.

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max huppert 3 years, 9 months ago

I dont understand this Mayor, she is not in the drug business so how can she make a comment about what is the right amount of growth for this operation? I will have to come and support this local business tonight, once again government trying to run another persons life. this guy might a plan to put half the town to work and have a big export to get funds to help fix the electrical grid, Mayor dont care when our ice cream melts cause of power outage. I cant wait to hear what Scott has to say :) Jacob? what u got on my nector..

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Scott Wedel 3 years, 9 months ago

I think it is the purpose of zoning (or land use) to have the buildings used in a way that does not unfairly impact the neighbors. So things like adding an apt to a building without any parking would generally not be allowed.

I think it is the worst sort of government meddling to even contemplate whether there are too many businesses of one type of another. I think there are certainly too many restaurants, bars and even pharmacies and laundromats in Oak Creek, but that is just my opinion. (And I am glad that Bonfigilio's is in OC, but if he were to leave then it would seem unlikely that another pharmacist would take his place) It is certainly not government's job to assume they are smarter than the free market system of individual investors putting their capital to work as they see fit.

It should be abundantly obvious that the proposed mmj growing operations would not be limited to supplying OC residents. For those that are new to economics, there is a concept called "exporting". Exporting is generally considered to create wealth because it brings more money into the community than is leaving the community. For instance, it is possible that mmj grown in OC would be exported to SB and sold in SB dispensaries.

Presumably those proposing grow operations are wishing to utilize the extremely low commercial rents of OC to successfully compete with other grow operations. It is not mmj that caused OC to have such low rents on commercial space and occupying existing vacant space with successful businesses is the first step towards economic vitality.

Max's comment regarding the electric grid refers to a recent Town Board meeting in which an expert from NMPP, the town's wholesale supplier, said that the Town is not properly maintaining the electrical system. That there are a number of existing problems that need immediate work and the Town needs to hire a qualified linesman at $50K-$75K annually to maintain the system.

I think this is an important issue for the Town because electricity rates for average users are overall already higher than YVEA (per kwh is higher, monthly fee is lower) and the sort of rate increase 10%-15% need to pay for proper maintenance could easily make OC noncompetitive for businesses. For instance, these proposed grow operations would be expected to pay more in electricity than rent and a rate increase could easily make SB a more competitive location for a grow operation than OC. Or more likely, make it worthwhile to locate in Yampa or rural county than OC.

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freerider 3 years, 9 months ago

YEEEEE HAAAWWW ....Come and listen to a story bout a man named Jed , a poor mountaineer barely kept his family fed ....then one day while out planting seeds , up from the ground come a bubblin weed....Cannibus that's is , Humbolt Tea .....green gold , mother nature

Well the first thing ya know ol Jeds a millionaire , so the kin folk said Jed move away from there, said Californy is the place ya outta be , so he packed up the truck and he packed up all his weed ....I got the need , Pacific stoners , surfer dudes , hot babes yeeee haaaw

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