(VIDEO) Readington Allows More Cannabis Business at Verano Facility | Hunterdon Review News

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READINGTON TWP. – The municipal committee, at its meeting on Tuesday 18 January, presented an ordinance allowing cannabis licenses for the existing cannabis cultivation facility in Verano.

Verano, an operating medicinal cannabis cultivation and production facility, acquired the previous WalMart property in September 2019. Back in 2019, then-Mayor Betty Ann Fort said that Verano did not need any variance since the Walmart property was already agricultural was used.

During the January 18 meeting, the Municipal Committee voted unanimously to choose to license the existing Verano site only.

The state Senate bill introduced six classes of licensed businesses, including a cannabis strain license for facilities involved in the cultivation and cultivation of cannabis; Cannabis manufacturing license for facilities involved in the manufacture, preparation and packaging of cannabis items; Wholesale cannabis license for entities that source and sell cannabis items for subsequent resale by other licensees; Cannabis distribution license for businesses that ship cannabis plants in bulk from one licensed grower to another licensed grower or bulk cannabis items from any type of licensed cannabis business to another; Cannabis retailer license for locations selling cannabis items and related supplies to consumers and cannabis supply license for businesses offering courier services for consumer purchases.

The municipal committee voted to license Verano for cultivation and cultivation; manufacture, preparation and packaging of cannabis items; Wholesaler license for entities involved in the acquisition and sale of cannabis items for later resale by other licensees and cannabis distributor license for businesses that sell cannabis plants in bulk from one licensed grower to another licensed grower or bulk cannabis items of any type of licensed Cannabis transport shop to another.

However, the municipality did not allow licensing for a retail location that would sell products to consumers. The regulation would impose a 2% transfer tax on such sales.

Under the Regulation, there is no more than one municipal license for a qualified entity or individual for any of the following: a cannabis facility; a medical cannabis facility or an organization operating as both a cannabis facility and a medical cannabis facility within the same facility and location within the community.

No one may operate a cannabis facility or medical facility, operate an expanded alternative treatment center, or otherwise convert from an alternative treatment center to a cannabis facility, or any combination thereof, in the community without a municipal license. A license must be applied for and obtained annually upon approval by the community board and the appropriate state licenses are required.

The license fees are as follows: Cannabis Facility License Application and Year One: $10,000; subsequent annual renewal fee: $5,000; Medical cannabis facility license application and first year: $10,000 and subsequent annual renewal fee: $5,000. Licenses are issued for one year.

The unanimously introduced ordinance stipulates that Vöran should only be operated with operating times from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., with the exception of the on-site security service; Persons under the age of 21 may only enter the facility if accompanied by a parent or legal guardian; No cannabis may be smoked, eaten or otherwise consumed or ingested in the facility. The facility should have full-time security protocols, including a 24-hour security video system with footage to be retained for a minimum of 30 days and a vault for storing money; Plants, products and utensils and lighting systems for greenhouses that are not visible; disposal of cannabis waste must be done in a closed space within a building; odors generated within the facility must be imperceptible; and it cannot be open to the public.

The second reading, public hearing and vote on adoption will take place on Monday 7 February.

The Township Committee introduced a subsequent related ordinance establishing a 2 percent transfer tax rate on income from each sale and a 1 percent transfer tax rate on wholesale sales.

The regulation was introduced unanimously. The second reading, public hearing and vote on adoption will take place on Monday 7 February.

The community committee introduced a second subsequent regulation creating a Licensed Cannabis Business Overlay (LCBO) zone.

The regulation was introduced unanimously. The second reading, public hearing and vote on adoption will take place on Monday 7 February.

The Township Committee also introduced an ordinance accepting the donation of the land at 15 Dart’s Mill Road. According to community attorney Sharon Dragon, the property is a historically designated property and the house on the property is used for affordable housing. There are also historical ruins on the property.

The regulation was introduced unanimously. The second reading and public hearing will take place on Monday 7 February.

The ward committee unanimously appointed the following ward professionals: Lerch, Vinci & Higgins LLP as ward auditors; Sharon A. Dragan of Mason, Griffin & Pierson as community attorney; McManimon & Scotland as Bond Counsel; Martin Allen as tax appellate attorney; Fisher & Phillips LLP as employment attorney; Van Cleef Engineering as community engineer; Finelli Consulting Engineers Inc. as conflict engineer; Clarke, Caton & Hintz as town planners; Brian Davis and Stephen Davis as prosecutors; Robert Ballard III as Assistant District Attorney; Scott Mitzner as public defender; Anthony Rotunno as assistant public defender; Surenian, Edwards, & Nolan LLC as Special Counsel; Richard Cushing as Special Counsel; Matthew Giacobbe as Special Counsel; JEC Computers for computer maintenance; AEIS Inspection Services for Lake Cushetunk Dam; Animal Control Solutions and Princeton Public Affairs Group for government affairs.

The committee also unanimously passed a resolution designating the area along eastbound Route 22 where the former Whitehouse Diner was located as an area requiring rehabilitation. The decision will now go to the planning committee for a public hearing.

The next ward committee meeting will be held beginning with the executive meeting on Monday, February 7 at 6:00 p.m. in the committee chambers of the ward building at 509 Route 523, Whitehouse Station.