The Newcastle Board of Selectmen discussed how the town will handle marijuana-related businesses after voters approved a ballot question legalizing recreational marijuana Nov. 8.
The topic surfaced during the board’s meeting Monday, Nov. 14.
Question 1 legalizes marijuana, subject to regulation and taxation, for adults 21 and up. Medical marijuana is already legal in Maine; the recent vote will legalize the recreational use of the drug.
The vote was 381,060-376,658, according to unofficial results collected by the Associated Press.
Chairman Brian Foote said it is his opinion that the town does not need to have a moratorium unless it is requested by residents through a petition, a view shared by the other selectmen.
Newcastle voters backed Question 1 647-604, according to unofficial results.
“It passed on the state level, and it passed on the town level,” Selectman Joel Lind said.
In addition, the legalization of marijuana could create business and possible revenue for the town, Lind said.
The Newcastle Local Planning Committee is currently in the process of rewriting the town’s land use ordinance and comprehensive plan, which could take “care of a lot of these issues” as well, Lind said.
The Newcastle Local Planning Committee will host a public information session about the comprehensive plan and land use ordinance at the Lincoln Academy Alumni Dining Commons on Tuesday, Dec. 6. The session will begin at 6:30 p.m.
The topic has also been discussed across the bridge. Prior to the election, on Nov. 2, the Damariscotta Board of Selectmen discussed the possibility of instituting a six-month moratorium on marijuana establishments and social clubs.
Voters in Damariscotta favored Question 1 736-611, according to unofficial results.
The Damariscotta selectmen will continue their discussion about the possible moratorium during their next meeting, Wednesday, Nov. 16.