City council allowing medical marijuana business to buy land near Newaygo school

Posted at 10:43 PM, Oct 09, 2017
and last updated 2017-10-09 22:44:17-04

NEWAYGO, Mich. -- A controversial vote at Monday's Newaygo City Council meeting is allowing a medical marijuana manufacturer to buy city land near a school.

A handful of people showed up at Monday's meeting to express disappointment of the possibility of Wring Biopharma setting up in town.  Some don't like it near the high school, and some are concerned it will cause a smell.

The council voted 4-2 to approve a purchasing agreement that allows a large-scale medical marijuana business to buy land that belongs to the city.  To build a facility in the industrial park, it would be $125,000 for the land alone.

"I don't want it anywhere near my home," said Newaygo resident Julie Beemer. "I feel it has no place near a high school. No place where our cross [country] kids run."

Mayor Ed Fedell says it's the only way the city can reduce property taxes for every property owner and the only way to reduce water and sewer rates.

"We did it for the money, but that money is the taxpayer's money by getting additional revenue," Fedell said, "the same as any other business."

Fedell says Wring Biopharma projects it will invest $3 million in the area. He adds that people had an opportunity to express their opinions earlier in the year at several other meetings.  He says there are other hoops for the company to jump through before anything is final.