WEST WENDOVER, Nevada — A divided city council voted to effectively reject recreational marijuana sales, only to have the mayor abruptly veto that decision.
It was a surprise twist on an already dramatic council meeting, leaving the future of recreational cannabis sales on the Utah-Nevada border in limbo.
The West Wendover City Council voted 3-1 on Tuesday to not consider an ordinance that would expand marijuana to allow for recreational sales in the community. It came after lengthy public comment, mostly opposed to recreational marijuana. Some residents worried about the impact to crime, their youth, and their primary industry — casinos.
FOX 13 first reported last year on West Wendover’s consideration of recreational marijuana sales. Council members traveled to Mesquite to tour a dispensary there after Nevada voters approved recreational marijuana in 2016.
The West Wendover City Council originally voted last year to allow medical marijuana, with the potential to expand its ordinance for recreational marijuana.
Since then, the council has deliberated heavily over whether to allow it to happen. The casino border town’s attraction to Utahns has not been lost of them. West Wendover is a 90 minute drive from Salt Lake City.
Mayor Daniel Corona has been a longtime proponent of recreational marijuana sales, arguing it could be an economic boon to the community that is 5,000 population during the week and more than 20,000 on weekends (mostly Utahns).
But council members appeared largely uneasy with the idea of recreational marijuana. Councilman John Hanson said he was comfortable with medical cannabis, but felt the decision to allow recreational sales was being “fast-tracked.”
Councilman Jerry Anderson agreed.
“I don’t feel I can support instant recreational marijuana,” he said.
Councilman Nick Flores expressed concerns about the impact that West