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Chicago-based medical marijuana dispenser eyeing DeKalb for second time

DeKALB – DeKalb residents will get their chance to weigh in on proposed regulations for recreational marijuana sales Wednesday night, ahead of a petitioner expected to make a second-round bid for a dispensary later in the month.

Chicago-based BQ Enterprises Inc. is looking to reapply for a medical marijuana sales license, with considerations for recreational sales after Jan. 1, after a similar petition was halted by the state. The petitioner, Mitch Zaveduk, is eyeing a 3,600-square-foot space at 700 Peace Road in DeKalb for the site.

The space will need to be rezoned once the city council approves ordinance regulations for marijuana sales, which will be the subject of a public hearing in front of the city’s Planning and Zoning Commission 6 p.m. Wednesday.

The dispensary petition will go before the commission Oct. 23, documents show.

Dan Olson, principal planner for DeKalb, said that area was approved for a marijuana license a few years ago, but when the state of Illinois halted licensing, the petitioner’s bid expired. They will have to restart the zoning process, Olson said, and this time, BQ Enterprises is eyeing the Peace Road location instead.

“They’ve indicated that if they get [approved], they’ll likely consider recreational cannabis, too,” Olson said Tuesday. “I think they would have to come back for a special use permit for the zoning.”

In the petition, BQ Enterprises principals said they believe their shop would benefit property owners in DeKalb.

“The design, construction and operation of the dispensary will increase economic development as well as create jobs for the resident of DeKalb,” the petition reads. “And as a result we believe property values will rise.”

The petitioner’s application also shows its plan to prioritize security for the space and said it plans on installing 34 high-definition digital cameras with facial and license plate recognition, card readers at each door entry, a biometric finger scan system for the vault and motion and infrared sensors. They said they also will hire a security guard and work with the DeKalb Police Department to coordinate product and cash deliveries.

The public hearing is set for 6 p.m. Wednesday at the DeKalb Municpal Building at 200 S. Fourth St. and will bring the council’s proposed regulations in front of the commission and give the public a chance to sound off on rules for operating recreational dispensaries in the city.

Merchants would be required to set up shop at least 250 feet away from schools, licensed day cares and residential properties.

The City Council has already expressed strong support for recreational marijuana dispensaries in DeKalb, with a desire to impose a full 3% tax on sales.

Source: The Daily Chronicle

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