BONNEY LAKE, WA – Retail marijuana is just a short drive away in either Buckley or Puyallup. But some residents and government officials are considering lifting a ban to allow retail marijuana inside Bonney Lake. Last Wednesday, the Bonney Lake Planning Commission held a public hearing on the matter, which stems from a directive the City Council handed to the commission earlier in 2017 to reevaluate the city’s ban.
The public hearing drew passionate speakers from both sides. Some residents say selling marijuana is about as harmful as selling coffee or beer, and tout the medical and recreational benefits of letting adults use cannabis. Opponents, however, fear that retail marijuana would degrade the character of Bonney Lake.
Resident Gwendolyn Fullteron told the commission that she’ll boycott any business in Bonney Lake located near a marijuana store. She said that she and her husband accidentally attended a “hemp fest” in Tacoma mistaking it for the Taste of Tacoma – and she did not look back on the experience fondly. She’s even ready to move out of Bonney Lake should the city allow retail marijuana.
“I will boycott, period, Bonney Lake,” she said. “I will not shop in Bonney Lake if it means I have to go by a marijuana shop.”
On the other side, resident Bonnie Givens said that no one seems to be worried about the impact of Costco building a store in town.
“Whether we have a pot shop here or not, people are already using it recreationally,” she said. “For the most part, people who are on pot don’t create a lot of issues. “
Bonney Lake’s pot ban dates back to 2014 when the City Council decided to approve a zoning ban to keep retail stores and marijuana producers out of town. But in February, the Council asked the