Marijuana regulation takes center stage at Grand Lake Board of Trustees meeting
The Grand Lake Board of Trustees reviewed the potential rules and regulations for retail marijuana establishments, which would cover stores as well as cultivation, manufacturing and testing facilities, during the workshop at their Monday night meeting. Grand Lake will have a ballot issue this November that could legalize retail marijuana in the town.
Proposed regulations would limit the number of licenses the board of trustees, which would act as the licensing authority, could grant to two. The trustees agreed that they would rather limit the permits to one, at least for the first year.
Town Manager John Crone said the regulations for medical marijuana dispensaries will be nearly identical to the retail ones and that the licenses will be for both retail and medical marijuana.
“Our retail licensees will also have to be medical,” Crone said. “We’re not going to have a separate dispensary from retail. It’s going to be combined with the same business.”
The code would only allow marijuana retailers in the town’s commercial zoning district or planned development districts and not in the central business district. It would also prohibit them from being within 1,000 feet of a school, 200 feet of a child care facility or 500 feet of another marijuana facility.
An excise tax of 10% would apply to all retail marijuana sales if the board approves these regulations and the ballot initiative passes. Mayor Steve Kudron said the tax would not apply to medical marijuana sales.
The process for selecting applicants if more than two apply for licenses would be through a qualified lottery where the trustees randomly select from a group of applicants that meet their standards.
The regulations also limit things like advertising, alcohol, consumption and sale on the premises, and outdoor marijuana sales.
- Grand County Sheriff Brett Schroetlin gave a report to the board during the workshop about staffing in his office and how it prepares for the winter with things like snowmobile patrols. Schroetlin also answered several trustee questions, including one about crime in and around marijuana shops, saying he has not seen increased activity around them.
- Trustees addressed public comments on short-term rentals after discussing potential regulation changes at their last meeting. The board gave staff direction for regulations to research, including a requirement for rental owners to display their licenses.
- Similarly to the last meeting, multiple members of the public made comments about rentals during the workshop. Rebecca Wilson told the board that a coalition of short-term rental owners is working together to help address complaints and wants to work with the town board.
- Crone talked about water line preparations homeowners can make for the winter, an application the town put in for a housing grant, a grant for water clarity work that the town has been awarded, the Main Street: Open for Business completion ceremony that Governor Jared Polis attended Sept. 21, the Veterans Memorial Park dedication Sept. 16, work on the marina roof and Grand Lake sign at Thompson Park, snowmobile access, and the hiring process for a new public works director in his manager’s report.
- The board approved the minutes for the Sept. 12, June 13 and May 23 meetings. They also approved the accounts payable for Sept. 26.
- Town Treasurer Heike Wilson discussed the town’s August financials and July sales tax numbers.
- Trustees voted to allow short-term rentals in multi-family structures within the multi-family residential zoning district. Mayor Pro-Tem Bjorkman recused himself from the discussion and vote due to a conflict of interest, and Trustee Baxter Strachan voted against the ordinance.
- The board directed staff to create a budget resolution to offset payment in lieu of parking fees paid by Grand Sunset LLC and Majestic Corner LLC for their Boardwalk Plaza and Portal Crossing projects because the developers ended up providing all the required parking on site at the two locations. Trustees also instructed staff to draft an ordinance that would create an easier system for parking in lieu fee refunds in the future.
- Trustees approved the use of $48,760 to buy a new work truck for the public works department.
- Kudron mentioned the changing seasons, a visit from state representatives to Shadow Mountain and Grand Lake last week, the infamous green building in town and the upcoming election cycle for town board positions in his mayor’s report.
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