KALISPELL, MONT. — The Kalispell City Council voted to restrict marijuana dispensaries to industrial zones in the city.
After voters came together and voted to legalize marijuana there was a referendum in place stating zoning can’t be unreasonable and burdensome.
During the council vote, which ended 5-2 to restrict zoning to light and heavy industrial zones, Kalispell Mayor Mark Johnson had some bold remarks.
“I’m not supportive of this. I’m not supportive of this even really looking through the business zones,” Johnson said. “Every citizen that worked hard on this initiative should look in the mirror at night and say, ‘My god, what have I done.'”
Johnson stated he wants to wait for the state to place rules and regulations before allowing marijuana operations throughout the community.
In regards to the comments made during the city council meeting, he told us, “I think as we look at the initiative, I don’t know that everybody understood the ramifications of legalizing cannabis in the state of Montana, what that could lead to.”
Some on the council say putting those businesses only in the industrial areas is too restrictive and not consistent.
Ward 3 City Council member Ryan Hunter says he hopes businesses can expand from industrial zones into business zones so they won’t have so many clustered in one area, like in Evergreen.
A second City Council vote will be held for zoning of dispensaries this upcoming Monday when plans will be finalized.