Marijuana Ordinance on Ballot Again

Do you want a recreational marijuana store on Main Street in the middle of Rangeley, close to the theater, park, restaurants, shops, day care or churches? The new ordinance that is currently up for vote on November 5 would allow just that. It is less restrictive than the one that was defeated on the recent June ballot. Obviously, if you feel that pot should not be sold anywhere in Rangeley then you will want to vote NO on this article. But let’s say you voted in favor of legalization. And let’s say you believe you should be allowed to use pot recreationally. You should still vote NO and here’s why. In order for recreational pot to be sold legally in Rangeley, the town must vote to opt in. This is done by passage of an ordinance which regulates the location, hours, security and other parameters. But where should it be located? Certainly not Main Street. Rangeley is considered one of the most charming small towns in Maine. A marijuana store will not add to that charm, nor will it add to our recreation and sports image. As of June 28, 2019 there were only 14 cities and towns in Maine out of 488 municipalities that have opted into legalizing the sale of pot. If you vote to allow sales in Rangeley then we will become one of the very few destination spots for people to drive to for their supply. Do you think this will create traffic and parking issues? Just Google search “marijuana traffic jams” to see what happened in Leicester, MA last year: “Hell” “Absolute Mayhem” “Havoc” were some of the cries of the residents. So why would you want a pot store anywhere on Main Street when it could be situated off the beaten path or disallowed altogether? Regardless of where you stand on the issue of legalization, we should preserve our picturesque Main Street. Vote NO on November 5. If you’re away, your absentee ballot may very well make a difference.

Jeff Zapolsky

Rangeley


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