South Hadley to decide on pot shops in town Wednesday night

Wednesday's meeting will be held in town hall auditorium at 6 p.m.

(AP Photo/John Locher, File)

SOUTH HADLEY, Mass. (WWLP) – Massachusetts legalized recreational pot more than a year ago, but when it comes to pot shops opening up, some communities are saying “not in my front yard.”  

South Hadley residents will decide whether to welcome pot shops, in a special town meeting Wednesday night.

“I think the town should let the voters voices be heard,” Jody Phelps of South Hadley told 22News.

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Statewide, voters legalized recreational marijuana in November of 2016. But deciding where pot shops can open, is still up for debate.

“Voting is important and it’s how people state what they want for where they live,” said Phelps. “I think that they have a say and I think that if you just shut down what the voters have said, then you’re going against a democracy. So, I think that the voters voices should be heard and recognized.”

One hundred and twenty elective town meeting members will vote on 18 different articles.

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Three of those articles deal with marijuana zoning, cultivation and banning marijuana shops from opening in South Hadley.

Article 4 is a zoning amendment that  prohibits all recreational marijuana commercial activities in town. It is a companion to Article 6, which would create a bylaw to ban pot shops from opening in South Hadley.

“Article 5 would create zoning restrictions, so marijuana cultivation, packaging, there related under 94G, would be allowed in select areas that are described throughout the town,” South Hadley Town Administrator Michael Sullivan told 22News.

If the amendments pass, they’ll be placed on the ballot, where voters will decide during the annual town elections in April.

Wednesday’s meeting will be held in town hall auditorium at 6 p.m.