Debated on Marijuana Dispensaries
Sterling Heights is the fourth-largest city in Michigan – although marijuana is legal in the state, there are no places to buy it.
On Wednesday, residents debated whether the town would allow marijuana dispensaries to open for business. Many said no way.
“This is completely ridiculous to have this come into Sterling Heights. It’s unnecessary and unwanted,” said one woman at the meeting.
“I can proudly say my kids haven’t been involved in drugs, but now you would like to sell marijuana in the community when Sterling Heights is a family-oriented city,” said resident Heidi Allen. “We’d wish to keep it that way.”
Officials say such facilities aren’t allowed per city ordinance now. The question is whether or not the people would be open to changing that. The general public forum saw feelings split down the middle.
“I think Sterling Heights needs it,” said Sanford Williams.
Williams said he plans to open a dispensary if the town council ever gives the green light. He thinks naysayers just have to keep an open mind.
“It helps out plenty of people with cancer, plenty of people,” he said. “I have epilepsy, and cannabis has helped me out plenty .”
“This isn’t going away,” said another resident at the meeting. “This is mainstream. This will provide good jobs for citizens in Sterling Heights and surrounding communities, and we seriously need to consider this.”
One thing is obvious dispensaries are big business. We saw two of them over in neighboring Utica, and clients were steadily rolling through.
But many say that’s close enough. For now, city leaders say it’s nearly collecting feedback before a joint decision is made.
“We’ve taken good notes here tonight,” said mayor Mark Vanderpool. “And you’ll rest assured that your comments will be in our final report.”
The mayor and council will get the first draft of that report on Sept 30th, the ultimate version will be issued at the end of October – and then it will be in the council’s hands to see if they want to take action.