Rebecca Jordan-Gleason, the co-owner and operator of Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum, requested a letter of support relating to a proposal to grow, process, and sell medical Marijuana at the asylum.
Gleason said West Virginia has loosened regulations on the medical Marijuana laws in the state, and 10 counties are now permitted to have facilities that grow, process, and sell the medicine.
“I think it’s amazing if Lewis County can get in on the ground floor,” Gleason stated.
Gleason cited facts from Colorado and Washington, saying that CO brought in $506 million between 2014 and 2016, and Washington collected $256 million in 2016 alone in revenue from marijuana.
However, recreational Marijuana is legal in both these states, and not in WV. She did add, though, that these figures are just state taxes and not municipal.
Gleason said the economic benefits would include additional jobs, and TALA could implement “cush” tourism by offering tours of the medical Marijuana outfit. All council members approved the motion to write a letter of support.
The agreement between the city and the state Department of Highways regarding the Polk Creek Bridge has been submitted, and there is a verbal agreement for one right-of-way, but the city has to ensure fire trucks can get to locations while the bridge is shut down. There is no timeline yet on how long the project will take.
A public hearing was held regarding the municipal fee amended ordinance.
Resident Junior Kelly said he is against the municipal fee, citing renters who have children and with the amount of rental property increasing, he’s afraid those costs will be passed on to renters by the property owners.
Finance manager Dodie Arbogast clarified that the Business and Occupation (B&O) tax will be done away with for non-owner occupied property.
“It actually simplifies the process,” she said.
Kelly also asked about commercial rental property, but Arbogast said there are less of those types of property in Weston.
Resident Randy Bohan also spoke, inquiring about vacant rental properties.
He said the city is, “basically substituting a fee for monetary gain. We’re not getting anything back.”
Bohan said city residents will be paying for the Polk Creek Bridge with ordinance money. Mayor Julia Spelsberg and Police Chief Josh Thomas both replied that the bridge is being fixed through money brought in from the sales tax, not the ordinance.
Bohan ended his comments by saying, “I wouldn’t buy a house in this town for nothing.”
He also said he has improved neighborhoods in Weston, but has only gotten “kicked” by the city for it. All council members approved the municipal fee ordinance.
The council signed a vendor agreement between the city and the Almost Heaven BBQ Bash, which states that no vendors can be within a two block radius of the bash if they are not affiliated with it.
This excludes established businesses from setting up a booth in front of their stores. The beer garden for the 2018 bash was also approved by council. Bash organizer Jody Light commended council member Eric Dever for his assistance with dumpster costs.
Public Works Director Jacob Culver asked that residents call City Hall at 304-269-6141 by March 29 to be put on the list for items needing picked up on Make-it-Shine Day.
Culver also said he has been in touch with J.F. Allen regarding paving projects, which should begin anytime. Council member John Wyllie asked about the street in front of TALA, and Culver said the funds may not be available to redo the entire street, but they may be able to do partial milling, which will prepare for it new blacktop.
Culver said two streets in Weston, Peggy and George, are not open due to drainage issues. He said there is access on these roads up to the turn, but traffic can not go through. He also said Loftis Street is completely closed due to a sinkhole.
“We are steadily trying to get everything done,” he stated.
Weston City Council meets the first Monday of each month at 6 p.m., at the Weston Fire Department.