Woodstock decides against making it easier for marijuana dispensaries to open in town – Shaw Local

Despite Woodstock opting to retain more control over marijuana dispensaries moving into town, city officials said they don’t think it will hurt the city’s chances to draw such businesses.

While the idea was to make Woodstock more attractive to such businesses by making it easier to open shop, many municipalities across the state maintain similar permitting requirements as Woodstock, Building and Zoning Director Joe Napolitano said Friday.

“We hope to make things as developer-friendly as possible,” Napolitano said. “I think we’re still on a fairly level playing field.”

The change would have allowed marijuana dispensaries to open like other businesses and avoid a two-month city approval process, City Manager Roscoe Stelford said at the City Council meeting last week.

Stelford said that the marijuana industry is legal and is “highly” regulated in Illinois, noting how hard it is to obtain a license for this type of business from the state. It’s also a “huge” revenue generator, he said.

“We have had several [dispensaries] looking in Woodstock,” Stelford said at the meeting. “None [have] yet to select us, but we felt this might help in that regard.”

Despite this, the City Council voted unanimously to keep the special-use permit requirement, with some council members saying they thought

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