TUCSON (KVOA) – Since the legalization of recreational marijuana, dispensaries have been popping up around southern Arizona. Now, the town of Patagonia is jumping on board.

“I’m not worried at all. I’m not going to use the dispensary, but I’m just kidding. It doesn’t bother me,” resident Susan Aten said. “To each his own. as long as it doesn’t turn into a problem.”

“I did a petition that somebody had and this person had lived by one and found it to be horrible,” Dianne Steffen said. “You know so they had first-hand experience with it.”

As of June, Arizona Department of Health Services has handed out licenses for selling marijuana to 143 establishments across the state. According to Patagonia’s Town Manager Ron Robinson, when they discussed it in a town meeting back in January, nobody brought up concerns.

“It was kind of like a little late into the party,” Robinson said. “I mean it’s already been done. You had your voice. You had 30 days to file an appeal and nobody did anything.”

Some residents fear it could change the town.

“I think that it’s going to bring an element in that we don’t need here, you know. It’s a pretty safe nice town,” Steffen said. “I think we don’t need it. I think it will change the dynamics of the town maybe the safety.

Others said they are excited about what all the new small businesses will have to offer.

“I think that’s wonderful. I’ve been to Montana this summer and they had one there too in a small little town, Red Lodge,” Fay Main, Patagonia resident said. “And everybody was really surprised, but people were going. It’s great.”

The dispensary is set to open sometime this year.


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