Camden isn’t the first to consider taking a break to see the bigger picture, according to Mike McQueeny, an attorney at Foley-Hoag, who advises communities and businesses in the cannabis industry in New Jersey and New York. He is also the Counsel of the New Jersey Cannabis Trade Association.
“Many communities across the state have some sort of cannabis task force” [or committee] to study how the impact will affect their individual communities, ”McQueeny said, adding that introducing a break would cause communities to miss out on the revenue that businesses could bring in.
“The first thing almost any company looking to get into the cannabis industry does is… go to professionals and [ask]’What cities are open for business,’ ”he said.
Camden’s committee has been in session for months. Pace said it isn’t just about recreational marijuana, and that members are looking at the emerging industry as a whole, not just the recreational part of it.
“We still need to make sure that we meet the needs of these patient services on the medical side,” she said. “The closest Camden pharmacy is 13 miles away in Bellmawr.”
In addition to medical supplies, Pace said the committee is also looking at hemp.
“It’s not so much about cannabis and medicine, but about manufacturing, building products and packaging materials,” she said. “Hemp is the bigger … sales driver.”