Grosse Pointe Shores adopts ordinance blocking marijuana businesses

By: K. Michelle Moran | Grosse Pointe Times | Published January 22, 2019


GROSSE POINTE SHORES — Grosse Pointe Shores doesn’t have any businesses, but the small city is still taking no chances with regard to the legalization of the use — and sale — of recreational marijuana in Michigan.

During a meeting Dec. 18, the Shores City Council voted unanimously in favor of an ordinance prohibiting marijuana establishments.

“We don’t have a commercial district,” Mayor Ted Kedzierski said. “I’m not sure about the effect of this (ordinance).”

Aside from City Hall property, Osius Park, the Grosse Pointe Yacht Club and the Edsel and Eleanor Ford Estate — the latter two of which are a private club and a historic estate, respectively — the Shores is exclusively residential.

However, City Manager Mark Wollenweber said there were some concerns that one of the city’s large homes could become a rental property where many marijuana plants could be grown, since the new state law allows individuals to each have up to 12 marijuana plants.

Kedzierski questioned whether such an operation would amount to a “commercial enterprise,” adding, “The tenants are still governed by our zoning (laws).”

But Shores officials say they’d rather err on the side of caution.

“This is all new ground,” Wollenweber said. “I think we’re better off putting something in writing.”

Other officials agreed.

“I think it’s important to go on record and say this is (the type of community we are),” City Councilman Matthew Seely said.

The majority of Grosse Pointe Shores voters in the November election were against Proposal 1, with 1,036 against it and 646 for it.

According to the ordinance, under the state’s 2018 Michigan Regulation and Taxation of Marihuana Act, a marijuana establishment “means a marihuana grower, marihuana safety compliance facility, marihuana processor, marihuana microbusiness, marihuana retailer, marihuana secure transporter, or any other type of marijuana-related business licensed by the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs.”

The ordinance does not, and cannot, prevent individuals from possessing or using legally-allowed amounts of marijuana in their own homes, but driving under the influence of marijuana or other drugs remains illegal.