Pro-marijuana advocate circulates petitions supporting dispensaries in city of Watertown – NNY360

WATERTOWN — A LaFargeville resident has gathered about 450 signatures on an online petition in support of allowing marijuana dispensaries in the city.

Marty Robinson began the petition in response to the City Council expecting to pass a local law that would ban the sale and distribution of marijuana in the city.

If he gets enough eligible signatures on the petition, the city will have to hold a public referendum on the issue.

Mr. Robinson, who advocates for the use of marijuana, said the government, even at the local level, is interfering with the people’s rights to make their own decisions.

“We just celebrated Independence Day,” he said. “You’re telling me we don’t have the right to choose.”

The City Council took the first step on Tuesday night to keep marijuana dispensaries from opening up in the city. Council members unanimously agreed to schedule a public hearing at 7 p.m. July 19 to get input from the public about the local law.

According to the Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act, signed into law by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo in March, cities, towns and villages can decide to opt out of allowing retail dispensaries, although they would have to forego those tax revenues generated by the

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