LEWISTON — With guidance from the state on medical marijuana licensing still pending, the city should consider placing a moratorium on distributors, city staff told councilors Tuesday.

Planning and Code Enforcement Director Gil Arsenault said he already had been approached by one person asking about opening a medical marijuana dispensary on Lisbon Street.

“I don’t know if that’s a good location or not,” Arsenault said. “That’s why we need to have this discussion.”

Councilors are scheduled to vote on a moratorium at their meeting Feb. 2.

Voters approved the sale of medical marijuana at the polls in
November, but the new law doesn’t include specific rules on how the
sales should be handled. The governor created a task force to specify
operations, rules and regulations. That group was expected to file a report by Dec. 31.

“But they sidestepped the issue, and now it’s up to the state Legislature,” City Administrator Ed Barrett said. He said he didn’t expect the state to have guidelines or rules on legal marijuana sales until the spring.

“We know that it’s legal, and that we need to be able to allow distribution if it’s the law,” Arsenault said. “But we need time so that we can look at it and decide what’s best for our community.”

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