Three of Four Town Meetings Conclude; Outcome Uneven on Medical Marijuana Questions
Julia Wells

Medical marijuana dispensaries could become a reality in Oak Bluffs and Tisbury after an effort to place a one-year moratorium on the dispensaries failed to win the backing of voters on Tuesday night. And the countywide pest control program is also in a state of uncertainty after voters in West Tisbury turned down their share of funding for the program.

Medical marijuana questions were on the warrants for three of four town meetings held Tuesday night. The outcome was slightly different in each town.

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One-Year Moratorium Proposed For Marijuana Dispensaries
Sara Brown

As Vineyard towns convene for annual town meetings this spring, most will be grappling with new bylaws in the face of a state law legalizing medical marijuana.

With ongoing discussion about Islandwide coordination over how to address the new law, five of the six Vineyard towns will vote this spring on whether to adopt bylaws prohibiting public marijuana consumption and imposing a one-year moratorium on medical marijuana dispensaries in all zoning districts. The moratorium is meant to give towns time to come up with their own regulations before marijuana dispensaries can open.

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Town Seeks Temporary Marijuana Moratorium
Sara Brown

Oak Bluffs selectmen Tuesday agreed to pursue a temporary moratorium on medical marijuana dispensaries, giving the town time until regulations are handed down by the state Department of Public Health and Island towns can work together to decide how to handle the issue.

The selectmen agreed to have town administrator Robert Whritenour draft town meeting articles calling for a moratorium and a public consumption bylaw, which the selectmen will look at during their next meeting on Feb. 26.

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West Tisbury Considers Marijuana Bylaw
Remy Tumin
As towns across the Island begin to discuss the implications of the new state medical marijuana law, the West Tisbury police chief brought the issue before the town selectmen for discussion this week.

Police chief Dan Rossi said he would like to see the town adopt a bylaw that prohibits smoking medical marijuana in public places. The chief asked the selectmen to place an article with the proposed bylaw on the annual town meeting warrant in April.

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Marijuana Law Worries Youth Leaders
Katie Ruppel

As the Massachusetts Department of Public Health scrambles to write regulations for the medical marijuana law that went into effect Jan. 1, towns are preparing for their own kind of scramble amid the prospect of medical marijuana dispensaries in counties across the state. They don’t have long, Martha’s Vineyard Youth Task Force coordinator Theresa Manning warned the Dukes County commission this week.

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Youth Task Force Says No to Marijuana
Sara Brown

With Massachusetts voters being asked in November to decide whether to legalize medical marijuana, the Dukes County Youth Task Force has come out against the proposal, saying it would exacerbate existing marijuana use by Island teens.

“The Youth Task Force feels committed to opposing ballot question three, primarily based on the fact we don’t want there be more access for kids for marijuana,” task force coordinator Theresa Manning told the Gazette.

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Marijuana Delivery Leads To Arrest in Menemsha
Sara Brown

A Chilmark summer employee was arraigned in Edgartown district court Thursday after allegedly having a package of marijuana mailed to the harbor master’s Menemsha office.

Emmett L. Ross, 19, was arraigned on August 21 charges in Chilmark of a drug violation near a school or park, possessing to distribute class D drug (marijuana) and larceny less than $250.

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New Marijuana Law Is Cause For Confusion Among Police
Jim Hickey

Less than a month after a new state law went into effect decriminalizing the possession of small amounts of marijuana, law enforcement leaders, both on Vineyard and around the commonwealth, are crying foul.

And already legislation has been proposed to toughen the statute.

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