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Kent City Council to hold public hearing Jan. 7 about marijuana businesses ban

The Kent City Council will hold a public hearing at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 7, in Council Chambers at City Hall, 220 Fourth Ave. S., about its six-month moratorium against marijuana businesses.

The council voted 4-3 on Nov. 19 to adopt the ban and is required by state law to hold a public hearing within 60 days after adoption of the ordinance.

Even though voters in 2012 approved Initiative 502 to allow recreational marijuana businesses, the city bans any marijuana business. The council plans to adopt land-use laws this year for a permanent ban against marijuana businesses in the city.

The council opposes marijuana businesses because the drug remains illegal under federal law.

Twenty-nine applications are on file with the state Liquor Control Board to open recreational marijuana businesses in Kent. The liquor board will issue a license even if a city bans the businesses. But city officials would deny permits to anyone who plans to open a marijuana business to process, produce or sell the product.

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