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CADILLAC — Over the winter of 2019 and 2020, city council went forward with ordinance regulating how many and where marijuana businesses could operate within city limits.

It’s July and there are no recreational pot shots open in town.

What gives?

COVID-19, of course.

“Due to executive orders coming out of our governor’s office over the last several months, a lot of work that municipalities otherwise could have been working on, such as marijuana related things, were put on pause,” said Cadillac’s City Manager, Marcus Peccia.

But the pause is lifting.

When restrictions lifted mid-June, the city of Cadillac resumed working on getting the marijuana applications approved.

Fourteen applicants for four spots back met the end-of-February deadline.

Recently, those applicants received communication from the city describing the competitive process for receiving a license. Additional documents were due on June 22.

“We’ve basically been organizing the information,” Peccia said earlier this week. “There’s a tremendous amount of data that needs to be organized and that data has just recently been provided to the marijuana committee.”

Peccia said he hoped to set a date for the committee to meet later in July. The committee will evaluate the applications.

“Hopefully they’ll be able to make a determination regarding the issuance of conditional licenses sometime in the very soon, foreseeable future,” Peccia said. After the city approves conditional licenses, the businesses will need to acquire state licenses as well. Afterward, the businesses would also need to go to the city’s planning commission for a special use permit.

“There’s still a little bit of a process that’s left for them but the light is certainly at the end of the tunnel,” Peccia said, adding that he was cautiously optimistic that marijuana businesses could start operating in the city this fall.

The Cadillac News asked Peccia if any applicants had dropped out of the process; he said he wasn’t aware of any.

The city is allowing four total marijuana provisioning centers in Cadillac; two recreational stores and two medical stores. The city previously told the Cadillac News that, of the 14 applications, eight were for recreational and six were for medical. Another business type, a marijuana micro business, would have allowed a fifth business to sell marijuana in city limits, but it would have had to go in the industrial zone. Nobody applied for a micro business permit; similarly, there were no applications for grow, transport or processing facilities in Cadillac. The city received applications for marijuana retail businesses only.

In June, the marijuana company Lume sent a letter to neighbors of their intended site at 1250 South Mitchell Street.

“Lume plans to be civically and charitably active within Cadillac by working with local organizations,” the letter stated, adding that the company was optimistic about the ability to get a license.

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