The Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission may look to Annapolis the next time it offers new licenses for medical marijuana dispensaries.
The Annapolis City Council voted 8-1 Monday night to allow dispensaries within city limits.
The change to the zoning code takes effect immediately and comes a year after Ward 6 Alderman DaJuan Gay, a Democrat, introduced similar legislation, which failed after rancorous debate. As with the 2021 debate, there was considerable discussion about possible buffer zones separating the dispensaries from schools and distances between dispensaries.
As a concession to Ward 3 Alderwoman Rhonda Pindell Charles, who vehemently opposed allowing dispensaries within city limits and voted “no” on the bill, the all-Democratic council adopted a one-mile buffer zone between dispensaries. That may rule out most of the Parole area as a potential site for new medical cannabis vendors, since there is already a Gold Leaf dispensary located on West Street near the city-county line.
Pindell Charles thanked council members for the concession, which she called a matter of “aldermanic courtesy.”
Ward 5 Alderman Ross Arnett pointed out, however, that all the buffer-zone deliberations may be a moot point since the state cannabis commission controls the licenses and approves final locations; municipalities can only opt-in by updating