Marijuana on county Planning's plate today

KINGMAN - The County Planning and Zoning Commission will once again take up discussion on where to locate marijuana dispensaries in the county at 10 a.m. today at the County Administration Building, 700 W. Beale St. The commission continued its Jan. 12 discussion of the issue to today in order to clarify some legal questions it had.

Arizona voters passed a law allowing the use of marijuana for medical purposes in November. The Arizona Department of Health Services is currently working on a set of rules that would govern the sale of medical marijuana. The department released a draft of the rules on Dec. 17 and plans to release a final copy of the rules by the end of March. ADHS will start taking applications for medical marijuana cards and request for dispensaries starting on April 1.

A number of local governments, including Mohave County, Lake Havasu City and Kingman, are rushing to enact zoning regulations before the new state regulations take effect.

The new law does not allow local governments to control the sale of medical marijuana, but it does allow them to regulate where dispensaries can be located.

County staff is recommending allowing dispensaries and cultivation buildings to operate in any area where a drug store could be located, except for neighborhood commercial zones, and all dispensaries must be at least 2,000 feet from another dispensary and 1,000 feet from a school, school bus stop, childcare center, library, public park, church, and any residentially zoned area.