Township bans all but one company from growing medical pot

Ban came after company filed application for growing operation in German Twp.

A proposed medical marijuana cultivation facility in Montgomery County’s German Twp. would be the only one allowed in the township after a resolution passed by trustees this month.

Township trustees voted unanimously this month to “prohibit cultivators, processors and retail dispensaries of medical marijuana.” But the resolution doesn’t apply to an application already in the works.

Township Trustee President Jake Stubbs said that after a public information session in May about medical marijuana where “we had people come 100 percent against it,” trustees moved to enact the ban. But before they had a chance to vote on it, they learned a property owner had already signed paperwork to option land for a facility.

RELATED: State identifies medical pot applicants

The township’s attorneys advised them to create a carve-out, he said.

““I would’ve liked to have banned them all. I don’t think he’ll get it (the license) in the end,” Stubbs said. “We were just trying to avoid a legal fight that wasn’t necessary at the time.”

FW Green Investments LLC has applied to the state for a level 1 cultivation license, which would allow it to grow initially up to 25,000 square feet, for a proposed facility in the township.

The law requires the grow sites to be indoors, so the company would need to construct a new building on the farmland on Friend Road near the intersection with Wetzel Road listed on township records as the proposed site.

Steve Anevski, a partner and general counsel of FW Green, said the company hopes to invest $10 million in the German Twp. site and hopefully employ up to 150 people there one day.

“It was a strategic location within the region and I think it would do a lot of great things in the community in terms of jobs,” he said.

The same company applied for a license for a facility in Huber Heights. Only two dozen licenses will be approved statewide out of the 185 applications received by the state.

RELATED: Huber location eyed for medical marijuana grow site

Stubbs said he thinks the property’s distance from the highway makes it unlikely to get a license. His concern, if it moves forward, is that Ohio laws could continue to change and it could go from growing medical pot to recreational weed.

“That’s not what we want here,” he said. “It’s not going to attract the people we want to attract.”

But Jason Degroat, who owns and lives near the Friend Road property, said state rules require so much security and other controls that concerns about a negative impact to the community are overblown.

“I don’t feel like it’s going to be any problem in anybody’s community because it’s going to be well managed by state,” he said.


Digging for the facts

The state of Ohio is refusing the release the locations of 185 proposed medical marijuana cultivation facilities across the state, so our reporters are going to local communities to reveal proposed sites in our region. This work is supported by your subscription.

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