The unanimous vote by Miamisburg City Council approving a medical marijuana ban would have been more lopsided if the city’s top elected official could vote on legislation.
“If the mayor could vote,” said Dick Church, Jr., longtime holder of that office, “he would have said yes also.”
Council’s 7-0 adoption of legislation Tuesday night to “prohibit cultivators, processors or retail dispensaries” of medical marijuana cited federal guidelines as a key factor.
Ohio last year legalized the drug for medical use. But Miamisburg’s legislation, which takes immediate effect, indicates medical marijuana “remains classified as a Schedule I controlled substance” under federal guidelines.
“The consequence of continued prohibition of marijuana by the federal government is that financial service providers such as banks and credit card companies are unable to do business with marijuana enterprises” because it remains illegal under federal law, the legislation approved by Miamisburg states.
Council’s decision means Miamisburg joins other area communities such as Oakwood, Huber Heights and Butler Twp. in rejecting the issue.
Some communities – Riverside, German Twp., Dayton, Yellow Springs, Mad River Twp., Monroe and Carlisle, among them - have allowed proposals for cultivation sites to move forward.
Other communities – including Miami Twp., Moraine and West Carrollton – have moratoriums in place, but have not taken any on long-term action.
With Miamisburg’s second moratorium on medical marijuana set to expire next month, council opted for the ban “since there (are) still a lot of unknowns” with federal guidelines, said Miamisburg Planner Ryan Homsi.
“They felt it would be more prudent to just prohibit the cultivation process and the retail dispensing,” he said.
Medical marijuana is permitted inside the city, so long as it is obtained legally, Homsi said.
But violators of Miamisburg’s law will face a third-degree misdemeanor charge and “each day such violation continues shall constitute a separate offense,” according to the legislation.
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