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Milan City Council to discuss moratorium on medical marijuana dispensaries Monday

June 28, 2010

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 By Gerald LaVaute, Heritage Newspapers

Milan City Council member Michael Armitage has proposed a one-year moratorium on permitting dispensaries for medical marijuana in the city.

But council member Dominic Hamden, who is an attorney, questioned at a June 14 council meeting whether the move is constitutional.

City attorney William Beach said the city of Livonia had forbidden dispensaries altogether, citing federal law.

Beach said a moratorium could be justified because of the unsettled nature of the current state law. Two separate amendments are being considered in the state Legislature, Beach said.

Council member Joe Chapin wants to figure out a way to impose a city tax on potential dispensary businesses in Milan, if and when they become legal.

“We need to figure out a way to tax this business,” Chapin said. “That’s why the state did it.”

Chapin said there were already a dozen cards belonging to city residents permitting them to grow small amounts of medical marijuana.

“It’s all online,” he said.

There was further discussion on the potential to tax the sale of medical marijuana. Beach said a local government may tax only what the state permits it to tax, including medical marijuana.

Beach agreed to make a presentation on the medical marijuana issue at the next City Council meeting on Monday. The discussion is planned for 6:30 p.m. at a work-study session.

“My goal is to be able to regulate this,” Armitage said.

Staff Writer Gerald LaVaute can be reached at 429-7380 or

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