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Tallmadge -- By unanimous vote of City Council Sept. 22, Tallmadge joined other Ohio cities that will spend the next months evaluating whether to prohibit or limit medical marijuana businesses here.
A Tallmadge father and son spoke favorably of the city's proposed six-month moratorium on marijuana at a public hearing Sept. 22; no one voiced opposition against it. City Council subsequently approved the half year moratorium on the cultivation, processing and sale of marijuana in Tallmadge, with the option to extend the time period if it is deemed necessary.
Mayor Dave Kline and Law Director Megan Raber recommended the moratorium in light of House Bill 523, which took effect on Sept. 8. That legislation allows people in Ohio with certain medical conditions to use physician-recommended medical marijuana.
Tallmadge's current zoning regulations don't address the production or dispensing of medical marijuana. Under the new state law, municipalities may establish their own regulations to prohibit or limit the number of marijuana operations.
Resident John Marshall reminded Council members that just last year Ohio voters rejected a measure to legalize both medical and recreational marijuana. "There are many terrible effects of this drug," he said, "and we need to realize this and I would say, as a city, we need to make sure that this never moves forward. We cannot support medical marijuana or marijuana at all. It is not something that I would say is acceptable on any level."
"There's just no good reason to allow this," Chuck Marshall said, "and there are all kinds of reasons not to allow it, so put a moratorium on it."
The six-month moratorium "allows us to fully digest a very voluminous bill that has multiple implications," Raber said, to ensure any changes to the zoning code are appropriate.
As an employer, the city has a drug-free workplace policy; the law director said the city intends to maintain that.
At its Sept. 22 meeting, Council also authorized the mayor to amend its agreement with the city of Macedonia for use of its jail. The amendment represents an increase in price, from $85 to $95 per day, to house an offender. Tallmadge is one of a number of communities which use the Macedonia jail, which can hold people for up to 12 days. Macedonia has 10 cells for men, two for women and three holding areas. Tallmadge makes more frequent use of the Cuyahoga Falls jail, according to Raber, due to its proximity.
On Sept. 22, City Council also adopted legislation "cleaning up some wording" in the pricing grid for the city's Parks and Recreation Department, according to Jessica Simons, the department manager. Membership and program rates are not affected by the ordinance which was approved, Simons said. A change was made to include yoga into aerobics-only memberships and the per person rate for racquetball court rentals was eliminated. be sold by the company
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