In the January 31, 2020 edition of The Excelsior Springs Standard, the approval of the medical marijuana dispensary being approved was covered in depth, offering insight from the City of Excelsior Springs, the owner of the future dispensary, and concerns for health from the community. This week the Excelsior Springs S.A.F.E. (Substance Abuse Free Environments) Committee had their monthly membership meeting at the Excelsior Springs Hospital. This committee is made up of leaders in various sectors throughout the committee, parents, educators, health care workers, private business’, and others. Their mission is geared toward preventing youth substance abuse and providing opportunities for access to resource information for those needing it.
During this month’s meeting, Melinda Mehaffy, the City of Excelsior Springs’ Economic Development Director was in attendance to share some of the details about the new local ordinances and state statutes that have been put in place in preparation. The first thing she shared was that this movement toward legalization wasn’t over, saying that a group called “Missourians for a New Approach” has a campaign underway currently to get 160,000 signatures for the recreational use of marijuana to be put on the ballot in November. Currently, only those with medical marijuana card holders will be allowed to purchase and even access the building for the dispensaries around the state.
While the costs are currently unknown for local municipalities due to this being a new venture by the state, local municipalities as a whole are estimated to receive $17 million by 2019 to $27 million by 2025. The City has to approach the dispensary like they would any other retail operation and the council has already voted to establish local ordinances to approach the issue.
Security for the premises is one concern for both cultivators and distributors of the product, due to them being on a cash only basis. Forest Palmer, manager of the local dispensary of operations, told the Excelsior Springs Standard that they have hired a military and law enforcement owned and operated security company called Armor Fi to offer security on site and to do deposits. He says that if the guard is unable to be there for some reason, the dispensary will remain closed.
Excelsior Springs only had one application for cultivation of marijuana in Excelsior Springs, but that application was denied. There weren’t any applications for infused or manufacturing here. There are, however, concerns surrounding the cultivation of the plant that the City is still left to consider, because card holders are also allowed to home grow plants. Mehaffy shared concerns including mold issues, due to the humidity from the large amounts of water that it takes to grow the plants. Water run off filtration is also a concern. She explained that it also requires a lot of light to grow, which could over burden someone’s home electricity system. She said that extraction is not allowed, due to greater risk of fire, or even explosion, if the cardholder growing the plants don’t know what they’re doing. Home growing is only allowed by those that are qualified cardholders and they must follow the state requirements. Cardholders must also get a certificate from the City that needs to be displayed in the home. Local certificates are at no cost and is a simple application process.
The City is currently doing inspection training now to be ready for the implementation of local ordinances. She explained that in Arizona policy was established requiring individuals to use a dispensary if they were in a certain distance to one and not be allowed to grow it in their homes. Mehaffy said that we do not have ordinances currently that do that.
The Kansas City Cannabis Company was the applicant chosen to have a medical marijuana dispensary license for an Excelsior Springs location. The dispensary will be located in Crown Hill Shopping Center in Excelsior Springs at the old Brown’s Pharmacy location. The company was also chosen for three other locations. They’re planning to open dispensaries in Blue Springs and Lake Lotawana in May and then sometime this summer, possibly June, the Kearney and local location will be opened. Mehaffy stated that the City was glad they were opening the other locations first, in order to work out any problems that may come along with that before opening ours.
In the January 31st edition of The Excelsior Springs Standard, Palmer announced that the dispensary will be employing around 15 people, with 10 being full time. He said that interested parties should reach out to their company at firstname.lastname@example.org.