Planning Board Public Hearing 04/13/2017

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April 13, 2017 - 6:30pm
April 13, 2017 - 6:30pm




The Harwich Planning Board will hold a public hearing beginning no earlier than 6:30 PM on Thursday, April 13, 2017 in the Griffin Room, 732 Main St., Harwich, MA to consider the following proposed Town of Harwich Zoning Code amendment. Any member of the public having an interest in this application is invited to attend and provide information and comment relative to this matter or submit comments in writing to the Planning Board at the address shown below.


ARTICLE 37: [New Section] Article XXII Temporary Moratorium on the Sale and Distribution of Recreational Marijuana


To see if the Town will vote to amend the Town of Harwich Zoning By-laws by adding a new section and further to amend the Table of Contents to add “Article XXII Temporary Moratorium on the Sale and Distribution of Recreational Marijuana” and the ensuing parts as proposed herein.


§325-134 Purpose


By vote at the State election on November 8, 2016, the voters of the Commonwealth approved a law regulating the cultivation, distribution, possession and use of marijuana for recreational purposes. The law took effect on December 15, 2016 and (as amended on December 30, 2016; Chapter 351 of the Acts of 2016) requires a Cannabis Control Commission to issue regulations regarding the licensing of commercial activities by March 15, 2018 and begin accepting applications for licenses on April 1, 2018.


Currently under the Zoning Bylaw, non-medical Marijuana Establishments (hereinafter a “Recreational Marijuana Establishment”) as defined in G.L. c.94G, §1 are not a permitted use in the Town and any regulations promulgated by the State Cannabis Control Commission are expected to provide guidance to the Town in regulating Recreational Marijuana Establishments. Further, the Act establishes a provision that involves ballot action by the Town whereby the Town may, by ballot, determine whether it will prohibit Recreational Marijuana Establishments within the Town.


The regulation of Recreational Marijuana Establishments and Marijuana Retailers raise novel and complex legal, planning, and public safety issues, and the Town needs time to study and consider the regulation of Recreational Marijuana Establishments and address such issues, as well as to address the potential impact of the State regulations on local zoning and to undertake a planning process to consider amending the Zoning Bylaw regarding regulation of Recreational Marijuana Establishments and other uses related to the regulation of recreational marijuana. The Town intends to adopt a temporary moratorium on the use of land and structures in the Town for Recreational Marijuana Establishments so as to allow the Town sufficient time to engage in a planning process to address the effects of such structures and uses in the Town and to adopt provisions of the Zoning Bylaw in a manner consistent with sound land use planning goals and objectives.


§325-135 Definitions …(* text continues)

And to act fully thereon.  By request of the Board of Selectmen.


*Complete text for the proposed amendment and related documents are on file with the Planning Department and the Office of the Town Clerk located at 732 Main Street, Harwich, MA 02645 and may be viewed during regular department business hours.


Lawrence E. Brophy, Chairman

Cape Cod Chronicle Print Dates: March 23 & 30, 2017