Avon explores dispensary ban | VailDaily.com

Avon explores dispensary ban

Lauren Glendenning
Vail, CO Colorado

AVON, Colorado– The town of Avon could be the next Eagle County municipality to ban medical marijuana businesses.

The Avon Town Council voted in favor of an ordinance Tuesday that would prohibit medical marijuana dispensaries in town, but would also permit medical marijuana possession and use by legal medical marijuana patients. It was the first reading of the ordinance.

The public has two upcoming chances to comment on the proposed law, at the town’s Planning and Zoning Commission meeting next week and again at the Avon Town Council meeting July 27.

Avon’s Planning and Zoning Commission also needs to approve the ordinance because it would amend zoning laws within the Avon Municipal Code, according to a memo to the council from Town Attorney Eric Heil.

The ordinance would add a lot of specific language to the town’s laws in order to prevent any loopholes, Heil said.

“We’re saying a lot of things very deliberately so we have no vagueness about what is being required,” Heil said.

The ordinance would prohibit medical marijuana-related businesses, as well as “any use of property for cultivation, manufacture, storage, distribution, acquisition or sale of marijuana, whether for profit or not-for-profit,” the memo said.

Language prohibiting the businesses would appear in sections of the town code everywhere from business registration to offenses against public peace to zone districts. Language in the town code would also state that all land uses within the town have to comply with local, state and federal laws.

The Avon Town Council voted 4 to 1 on the first reading of the ordinance, with Councilman Dave Dantas dissenting. Councilman Buz Reynolds wasn’t there for the vote.

Dantas asked Heil about state laws concerning medical marijuana dispensaries and what kinds of requirements the town could impose should it choose to allow the businesses.

Heil said the town could restrict zoning, distances between the businesses, signs and storefront designs or require minimum amounts of security, among other restrictions.

Community Editor Lauren Glendenning can be reached at 970-748-2983 or lglendenning@vaildaily.com.