Maribyrnong Council is taking the next step in the medical cannabis initiative

By Molly Magennis

Following feedback from the local community, Maribyrnong Council has decided to take the next step in its pursuit of medical cannabis.

The process of community involvement began in September last year, following a council meeting requesting feedback from the local community on the initiative, the purpose of which is to offset the municipal funds by establishing a company that would grow, produce and manufacture medical cannabis.

Although the engagement process was originally scheduled to run for six weeks, the engagement process was extended to January 28, 2022.

Of the 600 residents who conducted the survey, 74 percent (445) answered yes, and 26 percent (155) answered no to the question, “Would you support the Council entering the medical cannabis business?”

When asked whether they supported the municipality seeking alternative ideas to counter tariffs, 87 percent (519) of residents answered yes.

Due to the majority of residents showing their support for the initiative, the municipality will now begin the ‘feasibility and commercial law due diligence phase’, and an assessment of the council’s risk will be made in accordance with the Local Government Act.

A report with detailed results will be presented to the Council in October, where they will take a new decision to take the next step in the process.

Maribyrnong Mayor Anthony Tran said the initiative was in response to increased calls from some community members to reduce tariffs.

“That’s why we started looking outside the box to reduce the burden on our taxpayers,” he said.

“While we generally support the idea of ​​the Council entering the medical cannabis industry, we also understand that our community wants to see more details about what this would look like.”

“They have made it clear that they want to see a more comprehensive study to answer their questions about things like the operational model and specifically the costs that would be involved before they would be willing to see the company move forward.”

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