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Ganja-preneur In Grafton

The ability to invest in medical marijuana only recently came to our state, and the Telegram-Gazette is reporting on one intrepid investor who wants to open a dispensary in Grafton. John Glowik, from Shrewsbury, is proposing a 30,000 square foot facility. To get approval from the state, he’ll have to post a half-million dollar bond, and the expenses don’t end there. With 35 employees, it would also boost the local economy.

According to the Telegram, Glowik couldn’t be reached for comment, but the Town Administrator, Tim McInerney said, “This is not a mom 'n pop business. It's a real pharmaceutical industry. Locally, if we were to have it, that is certainly the environment for it, but we are still a long way away."

If approved, the dispensary could be the first to open in the state, which allows five per county. But it’s all provisional for now, the state Department of Health isn’t even accepting applications yet.

Not all communities are on board with medical marijuana dispensaries in their jurisdictions. Some have said they wouldn’t approve the zoning or would forbid the sale of marijuana. That’s a problem for patients and advocates who are still trying to get the message out that “medical” isn’t the same as the drug of abuse. They insist cannabis for medical use will be strictly controlled and used by patients for real diseases – keeping it out of the hands of unauthorized people, especially youth.

Other states have faced similar problems, problems that arise when trying to take law and make it into a practical “boots on the ground” system. Both Michigan and California, two medical marijuana states, have seen revisions of their laws by the courts with consequences that reshaped how medical marijuana is provided in their states.

Mr. Glowik will be taking a risk, a risk on the stability of our state law and how medical marijuana will be enforced. But that’s what an entrepreneur does, even a ganja-preneur. They take risks in the hope of gaining financial rewards.

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