Xenia medical pot ban won’t block Central State lab, city says

Marijuana plant
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Marijuana plant

Xenia officials say they don't believe that city's ban on medical marijuana businesses conflicts with Central State University's hopes to both annex into the city and become a state-licensed cannabis testing lab.

"While the current city of Xenia code cites a prohibition of cultivating, processing and dispensing of marijuana, it appears to be silent and not specific on the testing of medical marijuana," said city spokesman Lee Ward Thursday.

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“We see no conflict at this time,” he said, though they will review the laws and make sure there are no problems in the event Central State is actually awarded a license to host the state’s first test facility for medical marijuana.

Central State and Hocking College, in Athens County, both applied to get the first license to test medical marijuana for quality. State law says the first license must go to a public institution. After a year, private labs can be licensed.

RELATED: Central State University wants marijuana lab license

Meanwhile, Xenia city officials voted last month to begin the process to annex into the city of Xenia.

RELATED: Xenia Council votes 5-1 in favor of CSU pre-annexation deal

Central State officials have not responded to emailed questions about how much a cannabis testing lab would cost or how it would be paid for. This story will be updated once that information is provided.

Hocking College officials have estimated their lab could cost $5 million. They are setting up an endowment for private investors to pay for it.

RELATED: Ohio college confident feds won’t block pot testing lab

The company Hocking College is partnering with to run its lab has estimated that by 2020 Ohio’s lab testing industry could be worth half a billion dollars.

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