CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) - City council members have voted to delayed adoption of the Missouri medical marijuana policy.
Update: On Monday, May 20 members voted to allow for data collection and getting feedback from the public. The deadline for the adoption of the policy has been moved to August 3.
The City of Cape Girardeau is considering a strict approach to where medical marijuana facilities can set up shop around town.
Staff with the city’s planning and zoning commission have agreed on a proposal that recommends all dispensaries and cultivation facilities be at least 1,000 feet away from schools, daycares and churches.
Compare that to the city’s 200-foot buffer zone for a business that sells alcohol.
City Planner Ryan Shrimplin said only 24 dispensaries will be approved in each congressional district, and the district in southeast Missouri is the largest in the state, encompassing almost 30 counties.
“So it’s not going to be an inundation of any particular facility within any given community. They should be fairly dispersed,” Shrimplin said. “Nonetheless we are looking at the possibility of having several different dispensaries in Cape Girardeau and that is what we had in mind when we were looking at the maps and distance requirements.”
Shrimplin said their proposed 1,000-foot buffer zone would keep businesses involved in the medical cannabis industry out of residential neighborhoods and place them in commercial, industrial and agricultural districts.
"We're trying to be mindful of the interests of these particular facility operators given that the state said they need to have to reasonable accommodation here in our city,” Shrimplin said. “We are also balancing that with the concerns and any questions that our residents may have."
Areas of town where medical marijuana dispensaries could be located include the commercial business park along Interstate 55, roads around the Saint Francis Medical Center, the Doctor’s Park area on Mount Auburn Road, parts of Kingshighway and small sections of Broadview, Broadway and William Street.
Under the current framework, the planning commission is recommending that dispensaries in Cape Girardeau be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., seven days a week.