A third central Ohio marijuana grow facility has been added to a proposal to legalize the drug in Ohio.
A 25-acre site on Rt. 42 abutting the Delaware city limits in Concord Township is now part of ResponsibleOhio’s proposed constitutional amendment, along with land in Grove City and Pataskala and seven others across the state. All sites would be enclosed with 24-hour security and employ as many as 300 people.
The Delaware County property replaces one in Moraine in Montgomery County.
According to the Delaware County Auditor the land is owned by RDS Companies, LLC. The company is owned by Roger and Deborah Schuette, construction contractors.
“This change reflects a desire to bring this job growth and revenue to a location where such a venture would be supported,” said ResponsibleOhio spokesperson Lydia Bolander.
Moraine city had entered into an agreement to sell the land with an unknown company but once the plans were revealed for a marijuana grow site, City Manager David Hicks expressed concerns.
“We understand the pressure the Moraine city manager has been under,” said Bolander, “But we also understand the need for Ohio to reform its failed marijuana laws, the desire for people to find jobs and for cities to recoup lost revenue due to state and local government cuts.”
The new language also includes a previously announced plan to allow limited home grow. Anyone 21 and older would be able to get a permit and be allowed to have no more than four flowering marijuana plants and eight ounces of dried marijuana. All would have to be kept in secure place inaccessible to anyone younger than 21, according to the language.
The group also wants retail tax set at 5 percent instead of the previously proposed 15 percent. Manufacturing and distribution tax would remain at 15 percent.
“Combined with a lower tax rate for consumers, these changes will make our communities safer by smothering the black market,” Bolander said earlier this week.
ResponsibleOhio is backed by 10 investors including basketball legend Oscar Robertson, fashion designer Nanette Lepore, ampus real estate developer Rick Kirk, NFL player Frostee Rucker, Cincinnati radio station owner Frank Wood, entrepreneur Sir Alan Mooney of Columbus, among others.
The group must gather 305,591 valid signatures of Ohio registered voters to place the issue on the November ballot. Language for the amendment was submitted last week, so ResponsibleOhio will circulate new ballot language and resubmit it to the attorney general’s office with 1,000 signatures.