At its meeting Tuesday, the Stutsman County Commission unanimously approved the first reading of a proposed zoning ordinance that regulates where a medical marijuana manufacturing facility or dispensary is allowed to locate in the county. A medical marijuana manufacturing center is permitted by conditional use only in the agricultural and industrial districts. Dispensaries are permitted by conditional use only in the agricultural, commercial and industrial districts.
Tyler Perleberg, county tax director/zoning administrator; Nicole Meland, county auditor/chief operating officer; Kaiser; Jerry Bergquist, county emergency manager; the North Dakota Bureau of Criminal Investigation and the Central Valley Health District met in January to come up with a draft ordinance, according to Perleberg. He said Stutsman County State’s Attorney Fritz Fremgen reviewed the draft and suggested changes to make sure the ordinance complies with the state’s medical marijuana law, which was approved by the state’s voters in 2016.
Perleberg said the county Planning and Zoning Commission reviewed the proposed ordinance and, after making some minor changes, recommended the ordinance’s adoption by the County Commission.
Part of the County Commission’s discussion Tuesday was how much the county’s permit application fee should be for dispensaries and manufacturing centers. Meland said the the North Dakota Department of Health will charge $90,000 for a dispensary permit fee and $110,000 for a manufacturing center permit fee. She said these permits are biennial, which means the permits are only good for two years.
Meland said she asked Kaiser to make a recommendation. He said Tuesday the county should charge a $150,000 permit fee for either a medical marijuana dispensary or manufacturing center. By state law there will only be two manufacturing centers allowed in the state.
Kaiser said the county won’t see any money from the state fees and the county will incur costs if a dispensary or manufacturing