Urbana city council OKs pot shops in town

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URBANA—Pot shops could soon be coming to a Central Illinois city after the Urbana city council voted Monday to decide where medical marijuana facilities could set up shop within city limits.

Members approved a zoning amendment that would allow a cannabis cultivation center to grow medical marijuana just north of I-74 by the intersection of Lincoln Avenue and Anthony Drive.

Meanwhile, a dispensary could come to a downtown location on Broadway or University Avenues, among other possibilities.

But before the council even had a chance to discuss the proposal, they received another from an entrepreneur interested in opening a pot shop in the city.

David Brodsky of Natural Choice Holdings told members that he has already scouted out a location for a dispensary he believes would serve between 500 and 700 patients in and around Urbana, something city planners had in mind while drafting the proposed zones.

“We feel like currently, the city of Urbana is a regional center for medical care, and this is just another piece to add to that,” said city planner Kevin Garcia.

The pot shops would also generate tax revenue for the city, which Brodsky predicted could be around $100,000 annually.

Ultimately it is up to the state to decide which companies will get licenses to operate cultivation centers and dispensaries. But Brodsky says if he gets the green light, he would like to be up and running between March and September of 2015.

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