UPDATED: Stoughton Selectmen Ask to Support or Not to Fight Medical Marijuana Buisiness

The Stoughton selectmen will be meeting Wednesday, Dec. 18 at 7 p.m. in the Great Hall on the third floor of town hall and they will be reading a letter from G2 New England Inc. of Newton, who is involved in the medical marijuana business.

On their Facebook page, the company describes itself as "G2 New England Inc. (G2NE) is a nonprofit, nonpartisan enterprise whose mission is to provide natural remedies in order to alleviate pain, both physical and emotional."
Selectmen will be asked to support or not fight the plan for G2 New England Inc. to locate in Stoughton.

Other items selectmen are the renewal of licenses, which was continued from last meeting and changes in management of local businesses. 

Here's the agenda for the meeting:

ALL TO ORDER  7 p.m.  
a. Approve payroll and bill warrants and any other documents to come before the meeting 
b. Accept the donation from FY2014 State 911 Department Support & Incentive Grant 
c. Approve recommended Signage for Southworth Court 
d. Letter to G2 New England of support or non-opposition  
a. License Renewals – Continued from Dec 3, 2013 
b. Jack & Gilberte, Inc dba Lucky Star – Class II - Cont from Dec. 3, 2013 
c. Cheng-Du Restaurant – Sunday Entertainment 7:45pm  
a. Manager Change for T.G.I. Fridays – Dexter Assade 
b. Manager Change for Courtyard - Norbert Ginter  
9. EXECUTIVE SESSION a. Discuss Litigation  
10. SCHEDULE OF FUTURE MEETINGS  NEXT MEETING DATE – January 7, 2014 and January 21, 2014  
Roseanne December 17, 2013 at 09:35 AM
I don't want to see a pot shop in Stoughton. We don't need another negative thing shoved down our collective throats. What's next - a casino?
Bruce Promisel December 17, 2013 at 04:28 PM
I prefer not to see a pot shop either. But a well regulated and policed establishment should be acceptable. Just have to know a cancer patient where the availability of pot helps ease the pain to know it is worth it. Should only be able to purchase pot and pipes and papers with a legitimate id.
EC December 17, 2013 at 05:06 PM
My problem is that the business lists itself as a non profit. Does that mean the town gets no revenue from this? The extra security and maybe an uptick in crime costs money,who will pay? The business or the taxpayers?.....What does the town get out of this beside a possible increase in the crime rate?
Frank Loulourgas December 18, 2013 at 01:42 PM
I am the CEO of G2NE, the applicant vying for a license to operate in Stoughton. I came across this article and wanted to write a quick note and address your posted concerns. As Bruce mentioned, this is a highly regulated industry with a sound medical focus that will help treat a lot of patients with real medical needs. Security, drug diversion, and proper patient assessment are our highest priorities. Only patients properly diagnosed and certified by a qualified physician will receive care and their treatment will be tracked and monitored by our own internal physicians. The area selected for the dispensary, although easily accessible, is not located in a residential area or near any place where community members congregate. G2NE will host public educational forums focused on both the positive and negative impacts of medical marijuana use and will also use these forums to address any public concerns. To comment on your post EC, G2NE is committed to donating a percentage of our gross revenues directly to the Town of Stoughton. This is addition to our pledge to donate to local charitable organizations, hire local staff whenever feasible, work with the Town on community initiatives, and provide significant discounts to Senior Citizens and Veterans. We intend to integrate our security and fire control systems with the local police and fire departments. Furthermore, our selected building is fully solar powered and has well water access in order to reduce any strain on the Town’s resources. We will only use organic farming techniques and natural fertilizers ensuring no harmful waste or byproducts. And to clarify on the non-profit structure, we will be governed by the rules of a non-profit but will not be tax exempt. All dispensaries will pay full taxes as well as hefty registration and licensing fees to the State. I personally believe that a responsibly operated dispensary in Stoughton will have a strong positive impact on the Town. In addition to significant revenue and job creation, having a properly run dispensary within your borders as opposed to just over them means you as a citizen will have a voice in how we operate. We will be working with OASIS and other abuse prevention organizations to ensure the proper and safe use of medical marijuana for qualified adult patients only. Lastly, statistics from the west coast show that more often than not, crime rates are actually reduced in towns where regulated dispensaries operate for a multitude of reasons. We will keep our website up to date with information should you care to visit: www.g2ne.org Sincerely, Fotis ‘Frank’ Loulourgas CEO, G2 New England Inc
Roseanne December 18, 2013 at 01:58 PM
A question has dawned on me - Why doesn't the doctor fill the pot prescription at his or her office? Or why not at the pharmacy, like any other prescription? Sounds to me like doctors and pharmacies want nothing to do with filling these prescriptions.
David Jones December 18, 2013 at 02:16 PM
Hi Roseanne, Doctors and pharmacists don't currently have any way to fill these prescriptions as there is no state-governed supplier of Medical Marijuana. From the research into the Massachusetts Laws that I've done - regulations say that you have to grow it yourself to sell it. This is in large part due to the fact that all transactions need to be tracked from "seed to sale". These dispensaries will be chosen and vetted by the state under heavy restrictions and oversight to provide the product as recommended and prescribed by doctors. You can find the Massachusetts regulations here: http://www.mass.gov/eohhs/docs/dph/regs/105cmr725.rtf
Sarah December 18, 2013 at 09:59 PM
As long as properly regulated, professionally run, and located within a business zoned area, I see no problem at all with a medical marijuana dispensary in town. It really is no different than a pharmacy. If CVS, Rite Aid and Walgreens are permitted to be in town, why not? It's a healthy, effective medical intervention option for a variety of illnesses.
EC December 18, 2013 at 11:11 PM
Mr. Loulourgas,thank you for clarifying the the tax implications for the town. Having worked in the medical field,I know there are people who will benefit from this and your business seems to be professionally run.
EC December 19, 2013 at 04:29 PM
The SPD has posted they are opposed to this business and are not in talks to work with them, I don't like being lied to....
Frank Loulourgas December 19, 2013 at 05:22 PM
EC, nobody lied to you. I simply stated that we intend to integrate our security systems with local law enforcement, which is not only our intention, but a requirement by the State CMR regulations. I didn't infer that we were 'working closely with' the SPD. We have reached out to them asking for a meeting in order to discuss the SPD's concerns so we can address them as responsibly as possible. In fact, we have reached out to several Town Officials in order to cohesively and productively approach this new business and try to address any public concerns, but have received minimal cooperation. The fact of the matter is that medical marijuana is legal in Massachusetts, and Stoughton voted in favor of passing the law with 60% of voters being for it. If a dispensary does not open in Stoughton, one is likely to open in a neighboring town. Our thought is that there is a benefit working with a company that is willing to give the town and its voters a voice in how business operations are conducted, as well as provide financial support to the town. We do in fact have a meeting schedule with OASIS in order to assure them that their goal of protecting Stoughton's youth mirrors ours.


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