Could a medical marijuana dispensary wind up in Steubenville?
JEFFERSON COUNTY, Ohio —
The end of a 6-month ban on medical marijuana dispensaries in Steubenville has re-ignited the conversation about the newly legalized business model.
The discussion is, essentially, where do we go from here? City manager Jim Mavromatis advised council Tuesday night about the end of the moratorium. At the same time, a prospective dispensary operator has approached the city. Now city officials are weighing whether to give medical marijuana a green light to proceed.
“It’s medical marijuana,” City Councilman Eric Timmons said. “Who am I tell a person with a terminal illness or Stage IV cancer patient that something will relieve their pain or help them shouldn’t be allowed?”
Details are scant on the prospective dispensary operator, but the company operates in Illinois and Pennsylvania, according to Mavromatis. City officials are figuring what it would take to seat such a business in Steubenville.
“Because it gives a possibility of anywhere between 5-15 jobs and a pay range anywhere between $30,000-to-$55,000,” Mavromatis said.
Part of the draw to setting up shop in Steubenville is its central location, relative to West Virginia and Pennsylvania. U.S. 22 and Ohio 7 are central connectors to what could be a hub in Steubenville. But the negotiation process is about to get hyper competitive in the Ohio Valley.
“Jefferson, Harrison, Belmont and Monroe — those are the four counties,” Mavromatis said. “Out of those four counties, the state has authorized two dispensaries.”
And according to some on council, there’s an obvious benefit to having a dispensary.
“I think if it helps mitigate some of the opioid epidemic we’re seeing, I think an alternative for pain remediation that’s not opiate-based is