An Arlington Heights medical marijuana dispensary can start selling to recreational users as soon as Tuesday, Sept. 1, under an 18-month pilot program approved this week by the village board.
The approval follows months of lobbying by officials at Verilife, 1816 S. Arlington Heights Road, and parent company PharmaCann Inc. to get the board to overturn its November 2019 ban on recreational pot sales. Trustees unanimously agreed to do so last month, in light of ever-growing state revenue numbers after the Jan. 1 legalization.
Mayor Tom Hayes has been steadfast in his opposition to recreational pot sales since the topic was first discussed a year ago, and on Monday, he cast the lone vote in opposition.
Hayes argued the 18-month trial period was too long and the agreement doesn’t contain a mechanism for the board to end the pilot earlier if problems arise. But most trustees said they were comfortable with the length of term and believe Verilife has been a good business since moving to town in 2018.
Under the proposed pilot program, recreational sales will be allowed at Verilife from Sept. 1 through Feb. 28, 2022. Hours are 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily.
Amid parking lot capacity concerns of village officials, Verilife will be required to perform a rolling parking study throughout the course of the pilot — effectively, one study every six months — to gauge parking demand.
Trustees Monday night also enacted a new 3% local tax on cannabis sales that under state law can be collected starting Jan. 1. But per the pilot agreement, Verilife has agreed to pay the village 3% of gross