Wheaton joins other communities in zoning medical marijuana dispensaries in manufacturing and industrial zones

Similar to Naperville, Wheaton wants to restrict medical dispensaries to manufacturing and industrial zones, near the city’s downtown:

City council members Monday gave their preliminary approval of zoning changes that would limit any dispensing operations to the industrial and manufacturing zones immediately south and west of the city’s downtown…

“[State law] pretty much excludes all property in Wheaton from having a cultivation center. The dispensing organizations have slightly different restrictions,” said James Kozik, director of planning and economic development. “It seems to be the trend that the locations where a community is permitting them seems to be in the manufacturing or industrial area.”

The state also prohibits businesses that will dispense medical marijuana from being within 1,000 feet of the property line of a school or day care, from opening in any type of residence or residential area, and from referring patients to a physician.

Under the state statute, Kozik said, without city action, dispensing operations could also be located in the Danada shopping area, East Roosevelt Road, portions of the Wheaton College campus and portions of the DuPage County Complex along County Farm Road.

City Manager Don Rose said he believes law enforcement officials would prefer to have dispensing facilities limited to the manufacturing district. Most council members agreed.

It will be interesting to watch how this plays out in Wheaton, given the community’s conservative political and religious character, as well as in other suburban communities.

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