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How People Can File Complaints to Close Rochester’s Unlicensed Cannabis Stores

ROCHESTER, NY (WROC) – The City of Rochester has changed its nuisance law to crack down on any business selling cannabis products without a state-issued license. This includes offering customers marijuana after buying anything else from any store.

The text of this law is nothing new, but the city had to revise the section numbers of it to align with state laws. In a 7-2 vote on Tuesday, city council approved the transfer of illegal cannabis sales to the nuisance promotion program.

“Nowhere in New York State does anyone have a license to sell marijuana for non-medical purposes,” said City Attorney Linda Kingsley.

Like any business selling underage alcohol, unauthorized gambling, or prostitution, Rochester stores selling unlicensed marijuana products can be hit with 10 nuisance points. City Attorney Linda Kingsley said people can report violators by filing complaints with City Hall or their neighborhood service center.

“We will work with the Neighborhood Service Center and determine how aggressive we need to be with this property,” added attorney Kingsley. “Do we need to have the owner the next day and demand closure? Or do we just have to have a warning meeting with them? »

If a business accumulates 18 nuisance points in a year or 12 in less than six months, it can be closed. Deborah Granderson, who owns a boutique on Atlantic Avenue, was next to a CBD store until it closed. She alleged that the owner had participated in the type of illegal sales covered by this law, but no complaint was filed.

“He ended up doing other things in terms of selling illegal marijuana there,” Granderson said. “So it stopped customers from walking into my establishment thinking these two businesses were together. Because he used my address as his address.

“They are, in many cases, creating a product that is not safe or sold to children,” attorney Kingsley said. “And a product that the neighbors tell us about affects them and makes them uncomfortable.”

Any store found in possession of 10 or more pounds of weed can also be slapped with 10 nuisance points. Chad and Crystal Maier, who own All Natural CBD, believe this can prevent customers from obtaining cannabis that has been tampered with and better understand what is intended for pure medical use like their products.

“When people are legally able to sell marijuana, it will come through people who were legally allowed to grow marijuana,” Crystal said. “If you go into a store now, you have no idea what else is in there.”

This change to the city’s nuisance laws went into effect immediately. It will not apply to medical cannabis centers or those obtaining recreational licenses by the state Cannabis Management Board by the end of this year.

This nuisance does not apply to anyone who personally owns weed. The two board members who voted against this change were Vice President Mary Lupien and Stanley Martin.