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Soldotna Council taking up cannabis ordinances

Two items on Wednesday night's Soldotna City Council agenda will mark the beginning of the end in legalizing cannabis within city limits. One ordinance limits operations to commercially-zoned areas of the city only, while the other ordinance sets up the framework for taxing the product.

What the ordinances do not do, though, is allow any commercial growing of marijuana in the city, regardless of zoning.

Both ordinances, 2018-004 and 005, respectively, are on the Wednesday night meeting's consent agenda for introduction. That means there will be no discussion of the measures at the meeting, but public hearings are scheduled for the meetings of January 24th and February 14th.

The city is requiring a 500-foot buffer between any manufacturing or selling operation and schools, daycares, recreation or youth centers, places of worship, and correctional facilities, and 200-foot buffers from libraries, substance abuse facilities and city parks.

The recommendations came out of the city's Planning and Zoning Commission's January 3rd meeting, which was before Soldotna Police Chief Peter Mlynarik abruptly resigned from the State Marijuana Control Board after U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions revoked the "Cole Memo" which eased federal marijuana enforcement in states that had legalized it.

The Soldotna City Council meeting will be held at 6 p.m. Wednesday.

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