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Marengo City Council to discuss drafting pot ordinances

Draft ordinances regarding the zoning, taxation and use of marijuana in Marengo will be up for discussion during Monday’s City Council meeting.

The first ordinance would establish zoning classifications and definitions for marijuana businesses, including cultivation centers, craft growers, dispensaries, infusers, processors and transporters.

A separate section of the zoning code would address general standards for any these types of businesses, such as security, colocation, certain types of marijuana uses and other basic requests such as hours of operation, site plans and signage.

Changes to Marengo’s Zoning Code will come before the city’s Planning and Zoning Commission on Sept. 30 before the council votes on them.

Zoning standards for marijuana must be in place by the time the legalization law takes effect Jan. 1.

A separate ordinance could impose a tax of up to 3% in 0.25% increments on the gross sales receipts of recreational marijuana retailers. Some cities in McHenry County, including Woodstock and Harvard, already have approved a 3% tax.

A separate 3% tax at the county level currently is under 30-day review. However, McHenry County Board Chairman Jack Franks disagrees with the county’s finance and audit committee’s recommendation of setting the tax at its 3% cap.

A third draft ordinance could prohibit the use of marijuana in a public place.

The City Council meeting will be at 7 p.m. at Marengo City Hall, 132 E. Prairie St.

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