NORMAL (WEEK) - Bloomington-Normal's only business licensed to sell marijuana for medical use has permission from local leaders to become the first dispensary in the Twin Cities to sell cannabis for recreational use.
The Normal Town Council voted unanimously Monday night to approve a special use permit for The Green Solution at 501 Northtown Road, mirroring a 6-0 vote last week by Normal's Zoning Board of Appeals.
It became legal on New Years Day for Illinois businesses to sell marijuana for recreational purposes, but Bloomington-Normal residents must go to Peoria, Champaign, or Springfield to purchase the drug.
“We are super excited about all the support we have gotten from the community and the town council, " said Nathan Wang, new markets manager for parent company, Jushi.
"We are very excited to begin operations as soon as possible and make sure we are serving the needs of the community,” Wang also said.
The business owner is seeking a dual-use license from the state government.
The dispensary will be open daily from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m., there won't be a drive-through, and video cameras will be posted at building entrances and in the parking lot.
The Green Solution does not anticipate odor problems because the business won't be growing marijuana. However, if the smell does become a problem, the owner plans to install a charcoal filter to the building's heating and air conditioning system or use another air treatment.
The business also will put in place special procedures to handle potentially higher traffic during the first two weeks that recreational marijuana is sold at the location.
“We want to make sure that everybody in the community is properly educated about the product and what the benefits are and what some of the negatives might be and make sure that people are using it for the right reasons,” said Wang.