Although Wilmette’s moratorium on recreational cannabis sales was set to go up in smoke at the end of this month, Village trustees ensured at their June meeting that it will not be legally sold within town limits this year.
Wilmette’s Village Board approved a consent-agenda ordinance during its June 22 meeting that extends the moratorium through the end of 2021.
But despite that, discussions related to the sale of adult-use recreational cannabis will resurface next week.
The Village’s Land Use Committee is scheduled to meet at 7 p.m. Tuesday, June 29, to discuss Edens Plaza “as a potential area to zone for retail adult-use recreational cannabis,” according to the Village’s website.
Information about the meeting posted on the Village’s site says “the purpose of this meeting is to have a focused discussion on potential zoning regulations and locations and provide information to the full Village Board.” No final decision on the sale of adult-use cannabis will be made by the committee at the meeting, officials say.
Earlier this year, Wilmette trustees held a special meeting where they authorized the land use committee to investigate zoning and other logistics for a potential cannabis dispensary in the village, as previously reported by The Record.
At that meeting, the board showed a consensus toward Edens Plaza as the “logical” home for a potential cannabis dispensary.
The land use committee held a meeting in late February of this year where it reviewed all zoning districts in Wilmette to identify potential districts where dispensaries shouldn’t be allowed, according to information from the Village. Next week’s meeting will include the committee’s review of Edens Plaza.
A public agenda for that meeting is not available as of press time.
The decision to extend the moratorium is rooted in the interest of allowing comprehensive discussion.
In a memo to the Village Board, Village Manager Mike Braiman said staff recommended the extension “based upon the timeline for the Land Use Committee discussion and the subsequent Village Board deliberations.”
The Village of Wilmette has been reviewing recreational cannabis sales since the summer of 2019, as previously reported by The Record. Trustees prohibited the in-village sale of recreational cannabis prior to the legalization of such sales by the State of Illinois in January 2020.
In the summer of 2020, Wilmette officials reintroduced the measure to set up a ballot question to garner public opinion on the matter.
The non-binding, advisory November referendum saw significant support from Wilmette residents as 56.4 percent voted in favor of allowing the sale of cannabis in the village.
Those interested in delivering feedback on the matter can email firstname.lastname@example.org or attend the land use meeting on June 29.
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Martin Carlino is a co-founder and the senior editor who assigns and edits The Record stories, while also bylining articles every week. Martin is an experienced and award-winning education reporter who was the editor of The Northbrook Tower.