US (MD): County approves tougher regulations for future cannabis operations

By a unanimous vote on Monday, June 6, the St. Mary's County Planning Commission decided to adopt tougher regulations for future facilities used to grow and process medical cannabis. 

The commissioners decided that, although it's too late to affect a 50,000-square-foot grow house in Abell that sprouted up over the past year on a 26-acre farm, it was best to move forward with the stricter rules. "It's amazing that got passed," said planning commission member Joe Fazekas of the grow house. "I'm just flabbergasted."

He asked assistant county attorney John Houser if a change in ownership of the Abell grow house would affect its approval from the county. Houser said not as long as operations remain "persistent" at the site without a major gap. 

The planning commission decided to restrict future growing and processing operations to three zoning areas: High-Intensity Mixed-use, Limited Commercial Industrial, and Industrial. The changes affect three chapters of the comprehensive zoning ordinance. 

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