SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) - Eighteen states and the District of Columbia allow the use of medical marijuana. Massachusetts is now one of them. But some cities and towns are hoping they can keep sales of medical marijuana illegal in their communities.
On January 1st, 2013, the new law legalizing the use of medical marijuana went into effect in Massachusetts. But some cities and towns want to change their zoning bylaws to ensure sales of medical marijuana remain illegal in their neighborhoods.
This effort to ban marijuana dispensaries is only going on in the eastern part of the state right now. But some people here in western Massachusetts told 22News cities and towns here should also consider similar bylaws like Wakefield and Reading.
Kenneth Rodriguez of West Springfield told 22News "They should think about it because that's wrong for young kids. Now kids will go smoke because they can get it. For me, that's a big mistake."
Their concern comes from a new report that says one in 15 high school students smoke marijuana on a near daily basis.
But some people said towns shouldn't un-do what voters have already approved.
Kritens Ayers of West Springfield said "I think if anyone wants to abuse it, they are going to abuse it whether it's legalized or not, so I don't think that will be an issue.:
David Pelletier of South Hadley told 22News "It's good use for the people that need it for medical conditions. I mean, it should be our choice to use it or not. If they regulate it well, then we should be all set."
The state Dept. of Public Health said they will issue regulations to make sure nobody takes advantage of the new law. They have until May 1st to release specific details.