Several towns in Chautauqua County have public hearings scheduled in the near future to consider local laws that would allow each municipality to opt out of allowing retail cannabis dispensaries and on-site consumption sites.
If each of the local laws are passed, they would follow what has been a consistent trend across the county, with most towns and villages voting to opt out.
The first hearing, for the town of Harmony, will take place at 7 p.m. Wednesday at the town administration building, 1001 Blockville-Watts Flats Road, Ashville. A legal notice states that the hearing is “for the purpose of considering the advisability of adopting Local Law #2 for the year 2021 wherein the Town of Harmony would opt out of allowing cannabis retail dispensaries and on-site consumption sites as authorized under New York’s Cannabis Law Article 4.”
The town of Ellery will host its public hearing at 7:45 p.m. Thursday at its administration building, 25 Sunnyside Ave., Bemus Point. A legal notice states the same objective as the one by Harmony.
Meanwhile, the town of Chautauqua has planned a public hearing for 7:20 p.m. Monday, Sept. 13, at 2 Academy St., Mayville, “regarding the adoption of Local Law No. 1 of 2021, by which the Town would opt out allowing retail cannabis dispensaries and on-site cannabis consumption sites within the Town.”
Also on Sept. 13, the town of French Creek will hold a public hearing beginning at 7 p.m. at the highway building, 10106 Ravlin Hill Road. A notice states the purpose is, “Opting out of cannabis law.”
And the town of Poland is set to host a public hearing on the topic at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 14, at the town hall, 3593 Church St., Kennedy. The notice has the same language used by Chautauqua.
The Kiantone Town Board hosted a public hearing last Thursday to opt out of allowing retail sales and on-site cannabis consumption sites. It wasn’t immediately known if any action was taken after the hearing.
Most recently, the towns of Gerry and Busti, along with the villages of Bemus Point and Lakewood, have passed local laws to opt out.
Under the law, signed by then-Gov. Andrew Cuomo in April, New York residents 21 and older are allowed to possess up to 3 ounces of marijuana for recreational use. Residents will be able to buy marijuana from brick-and-mortar dispensaries.
The new law also allows for the creation of lounges and other adult-use consumption sites, but those will be limited to establishments with a license.