Consider lifting ban on medical marijuana businesses

Employees of Amazon Organics, a pot dispensary in Eugene, Ore., help customers purchase recreational marijuana on Thursday, Oct. 1, 2015. Oregon marijuana shops began selling marijuana Thursday for the first time to recreational users who are at least 21 years old, marking a big day for the budding pot industry. (AP Photo/Ryan Kang)

Marietta City Council has been approached about lifting the moratorium on medical marijuana growing and distribution in the city to allow for businesses to move in. We think it’s something they should seriously consider.

At a committee meeting this week, council was told there is a business interested in building a facility in Marietta to produce medical marijuana. In order for that company or another to move forward, council would have to lift its moratorium, which was put in place as the state was determining rules regarding medical marijuana.

These types of facilities have nothing to do with recreational drug use. They would be licensed by the state and highly regulated.

We think the city should consider that this new business could provide jobs in the community for many years to come. As many manufacturing sites have scaled back in recent years, we need to consider new opportunities for economic development.

These companies are going to operate somewhere within the state–we might as well reap the economic benefits. Doing so doesn’t mean that marijuana will be more readily available in the local area, medicinal or otherwise.

Ohio voters have said they want this option available to treat a variety of conditions. While city officials may want to do some more research before agreeing to be a growing or distribution site, we hope they keep open minds and consider the good that could come from doing so.