An Easthampton daycare is concerned about plans for a pot dispensary near their center.
State law creates a buffer zone preventing marijuana establishments from opening within 500 feet of a K-12 school. It does not mention daycare facilities.
Karin Pilgrim’s daycare business, All About Children Childcare, is a few hundred feet from Herbology’s proposed marijuana facility on Industrial Parkway.
Pilgrim was at the Easthampton Planning Board meeting Tuesday night to urge Herbology to find a different site.
“The legislature appears to have forgotten to include childcare,” said Pilgrim. “I’ve already in a couple of the prospective tours that I do, I already haven’t heard from a handful of families after I’ve disclosed that there could be this business going in next door.”
Easthampton’s Zoning Bylaws for adult-use cannabis reduced the state’s 500-foot buffer zone surrounding schools to 350-feet, but the city ordinance also fails to include daycare facilities in buffer zones.
“As a resident and as a pediatrician, I feel like the most vulnerable populations right now are the young children with rapid development of their brain, more likely to consume products if something is found on the ground,” said Dr. Kristen Deschene. “So I’m a little bit confused why that wasn’t considered.”
A Herbology representative told the Planning Board they’d have to notify the Cannabis Control Commission and police if someone was caught consuming on site, and that person could lose their medical card if they have one, and could even be banned from all state cannabis facilities.
“Again, we’re gonna provide literature that says do not access this way if you do you’ll be banned from the facility,” Deschene added. “Consume on site, you’re banned.”
Herbology made changes to their site plan to address concerns.
Those plans will be resubmitted to the Board and could be taken up as soon as the next Planning Board meeting.