Community meeting set for Milwaukee-Devon medical marijuana dispensary


A community meeting on a proposed medical marijuana dispensary at 6428-30 N. Milwaukee Ave. will be held from 5 to 6:15 p.m. Tuesday, May 19, at the Roden Library, 6083 N. Northwest Highway.

The state Department of Financial and Professional Regulation last winter approved the project, but also required is the issuance of a special use from the city Zoning Board of Appeals, which acts independently of the City Council. The Union Group of Illinois is planning to open the dispensary inside a former medial supply building and to have a parking lot constructed on an adjoining vacant lot.

The Norwood Park dispensary would be one of up to two medical marijuana shops that are allowed under state law in Jefferson Township, which includes all of the Northwest Side. State and city approval already has been given to a planned dispensary at 4758 N. Milwaukee Ave. in Jefferson Park.

The Norwood Park Chamber of Commerce is hosing the community meeting, which will include a review of the dispensary’s planned operating procedures and security plan. 41st Ward alderman-elect Anthony Napolitano has said that while a dispensary has the potential to benefit the ward, he personally opposes having one in the ward.

Dispensaries, which are required to have a security staff and surveillance cameras, are allowed to sell marijuana, drug paraphernalia and educational materials to registered patients.  Visitors to a dispensary are restricted to those with a state medical marijuana card.

Patients are allowed up to 2 ½ ounces of marijuana every two weeks, but they can seek a waiver from their physicians for larger amounts. Medical conditions which are covered under the state’s medical marijuana law include AIDS, glaucoma, hepatitis C, spinal cord injury, cancer, Crohn’s disease, lupus, multiple sclerosis and traumatic brain injury.

Reaction has been mixes at community meetings on other proposed dispensaries, with concerns raised about whether some patients may seek to sell their unused marijuana. Police, firefighters and commercial vehicle drivers are prohibited from using medical marijuana.