Note to readers: This story has been updated to reflect the correct size of the space and clarify the limits on medical marijuana sales.
SYCAMORE – The City Council approved a special use permit for a medical marijuana dispensary Monday.
The Dispensary, LLC., may now proceed with its request to the state of Illinois to be granted permission to operate the dispensary in the district encompassing DeKalb County. The state of Illinois only allows one dispensary per each of its 60 dispensary districts.
The council voted 7-0 – all but 2nd Ward Alderman Chuck Stowe were present – to grant the permit to The Dispensary for a new, 2,000- to 3,000-square-foot, ADA-compliant facility that would be built at 1985 Gateway Drive.
Luke Debatty, a representative for The Dispensary, said the operation will add eight to 10 jobs to the area.
“We’re not looking to truck in people from out of state,” Debatty told the council. “[Employees] will be local community members. We train them. That’s eight to 10 jobs for the community.”
Debatty added that there are only about 2,000 medical marijuana patients statewide.
“We’re going to need time to build our patient counts,” he said.
The Dispensary, if approved by the state, would be open seven days a week from, tentatively, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. It would be strictly a retail operation – no growing or cultivating would happen at the site. Patients could receive as much as 2 1/2 ounces of marijuana every two weeks, Debatty said. He also said that most dispensaries are cash only, but the Sycamore location would attempt to include debit and credit card payments, too.
Mayor Ken Mundy praised the prospects of The Dispensary and the boon it could be for Sycamore, although he did say dispensaries should be administered by medical facilities such as clinics and hospitals.
“The fact that the proposed site is within the medical corridor is gratifying,” Mundy said. “Should the state grant them authority to operate here, we understand the importance of this. It’s well-controlled, and hopefully, it will help some of the people who could use the pain relief that medical marijuana has alleged to provide.”
Coming to the table with a negative recommendation by the Planning Commission, the council Monday also shot down another dispensary proposed from Healthway Services of Illinois to operate a dispensary at 2814 DeKalb Ave., the former Lions Club building.
“There were some concerns raised about the unknowns, dealing with how many customers will a dispensary have and if that mean’s there’s adequate parking or not,” City Manager Brian Gregory said. “There was concern about pedestrian movements.”
The special use permit for a medical marijuana dispensary granted to The Dispensary, LLC by the Sycamore City Council on Monday now goes before the state for final approval.