Article XIX Temporary Moratorium on Marijuana Establishments, Retailers and Other Sale or Distribution of Marijuana and Marijuana Products Not Included in Definition of Medical Marijuana Treatment Centers and Medical Marijuana Overlay District
[Added 1-30-2018 by Doc. 9-B]
By vote at the State election on November 8, 2016, the voters of the Commonwealth approved a law entitled the "Regulation and Taxation of Marijuana Act" (the "Act"), regulating the control and production and distribution of marijuana under a system of licenses and regulations. Currently under the Zoning Ordinance, a marijuana retailer or establishment, except one established pursuant to the City's current Medical Marijuana Overlay District, is not a permitted use in the City, and any regulations promulgated by the Cannabis Control Commission under the Act are expected to provide guidance to the City in regulating marijuana sales and distribution. The regulation of marijuana raises novel and complex legal, planning, and public safety issues, and the City needs time to study and consider the regulation of marijuana retail or distribution centers and marijuana establishments and address such novel and complex issues, as well as to address the potential impact of the state regulations on local zoning and to undertake a planning process to consider amending the Zoning Ordinance regarding regulation of marijuana retail sales and distribution and other uses related to the regulation of marijuana. The City intends to adopt a temporary moratorium on the use of land and structures in the City for marijuana retail and distribution so as to allow the City sufficient time to engage in a planning process to address the effects of such structures and uses in the City and to enact ordinances in a manner consistent with sound land use planning goals and objections.
"Marijuana," "marijuana establishment," "marijuana product," and "marijuana retailer" shall have the meanings as set forth in the Act.
For the reasons set forth above and notwithstanding any other provision of the Zoning Ordinance to the contrary, the City hereby adopts a temporary moratorium on the use of land or structures for a marijuana establishment and marijuana retailer which are not included in the definitions for "medical marijuana treatment center" or "registered marijuana dispensary" in Article XVII herein. The moratorium shall be in effect through December 1, 2018. During the moratorium period, the City shall undertake a planning process to address the potential impacts of marijuana in the City, consider the Cannabis Control Commission regulations regarding marijuana, marijuana establishment, marijuana product, and marijuana retailer and related uses, and shall consider adopting new zoning ordinances to address the impact and operation of marijuana establishments and marijuana retailers and related uses.
The use of land or structures for a marijuana establishment or marijuana retailer which are not included in the definition of "medical marijuana treatment center" or "registered marijuana dispensary," as defined in Article XVII herein, shall not be permitted in any zoning district in the City of Haverhill so long as this Article XVIV is effective, as set forth in § 255-200 below. Use variances shall be strictly prohibited.
Unless extended, continued or modified by a subsequent action of the City Council and Mayor, the provisions of this temporary moratorium shall expire upon either of the first to occur of: (a) the adoption by the City Council and Mayor of an amendment to this article that explicitly rescinds or replaces this moratorium; or (b) December 1, 2018; all so that the City of Haverhill can enact superseding zoning regulations that set forth requirements applicable to marijuana uses.