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No Med. Marijuana Ordinance For Calumet


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CALUMET - There will be no ordinance covering the dispensing of medical marijuana in the village of Calumet, at least for now, after discussion on the issue Tuesday by the village Board of Trustees.


Trustee and ordinance committee member Dave Geisler told the other members the committee examined the current state law and two draft ordinances supplied to them and determined the state law was adequate to cover any situations which may present themselves in the village.


Geisler said the committee in discussing the issue considered the possible actions of caregivers and patients, and the possibility of a business created to cater to needs of those people.


"What we did was examine the (Michigan Medical Marihuana) act itself," he said.


In 2008, Michigan voters overwhelmingly approved the Michigan Medical Marihuana Act, which allows licensed medical practitioners to recommend to the state some patients be allowed to use marijuana for medical treatment, and to allow people approved by the state to use it.


Geisler said the restrictions on caregivers and patients in the law are adequate enough to allow any violators in the village to be covered by the law, and any ordinance the village could pass would be redundant.


There was a case in downstate Isabella County involving a medical marijuana club in which members could buy marijuana from each other and the club charged a fee to members. The case went to court, and it was determined the club did not conform to the state law, which does not allow patients to sell marijuana to each other.


State law allows caregivers to have 2.5 ounces of marijuana per patient, and the court determined there was too much marijuana on the premises of the club to conform to that requirement. It was also determined the fee the club charged amounted to a sale.


Because of that case, Geisler said the ordinance committee determined the state law would be adequate to cover any similar situations in Calumet.


Trustee Jonathan Pressel asked Geisler if the law addressed where caregivers should be located in a community, and Geisler said it didn't.


"You can have a caregiver or patient anywhere," he said.


However, Geisler said other laws regarding use of drugs had to be followed, including not smoking in public or on school grounds.


"We concluded the state law was sufficient to cover anything in the village," he said.


No action was taken. The discussion was for council information only.


On another issue, Trustee and CopperDog 150 board member Doug Harrer asked the village board members if Oak and Portland streets between Fourth and Fifth streets would be closed during the event for food and drink vendors.


Harrer said Portage Health is creating a catering service, and it wants to have a booth on Oak Street. Portage Health will donate all the proceeds from the sales at the event to the village.


"They're a very gracious crew," Harrer said. "They're doing a lot for CopperDog."


Board members voted unanimously to close Oak and Portland streets between Fourth and Fifth streets for the CopperDog 150.


In other business, the board:


agreed to support the Downtown Historic Commission in its partnership with students from Michigan Technological University to write grant proposals to get funds to help enforce the village Dangerous Buildings and Structures ordinance.


voted against purchasing terrorism insurance coverage for the village.


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