Published: 4/2/2021 3:17:55 PM
WHATELY — The group in the process of establishing an outdoor marijuana cultivation site on River Road is now moving forward with a proposal to establish a marijuana product manufacturing facility adjacent to the site.
The Selectboard gave its approval Wednesday night for Debilitating Medical Condition Treatment Centers Inc. (DMCTC) to hold a remote community outreach meeting on Tuesday, April 6, for a proposed manufacturing facility at 3 River Road.
The same group previously came to an agreement with the town on an outdoor cultivation facility at 7 River Road. Since the town approved a host community agreement last July, DMCTC has received approval from the Conservation Commission, Zoning Board of Appeals and the Planning Board for its proposed adult-use cultivation facility, according to Jared Glanz-Berger of DMCTC.
He said DMCTC has applied to move its existing provisional medical cultivation license from Agawam to Whately, and that the Cannabis Control Commission (CCC) has informed DMCTC it can expect to obtain a provisional adult-use cultivation license for the facility in April.
“We are beginning to break ground, and we fully expect to be operational this year, to have a harvest this year,” he said of 7 River Road. “We would very much like to keep the economic benefits of our harvest in Whately by having a processing facility.”
The site of the proposed product manufacturing facility at 3 River Road, which currently houses C&A Repair and Equipment, an 11,000-square-foot motor repair shop and warehouse, is surrounded by other farms, he continued.
“Our intention here is to tidy up the site, beautify it, and do some natural restoration,” Glanz-Berger explained. “We would come in and do some restoration of habitat.”
There will be 18 planned positions initially, from operations to management and leadership.
“If we are successful in making relationships with others in the area, we can certainly increase this and run it more throughout the day,” he said.
Selectboard Chair Fred Orloski asked about the storage and transportation of the products.
“Really, we try to keep our inventory and cash on hand limited to reduce … targeting by criminals,” Glanz-Berger said. “We really try to push this out to our wholesale clients as quickly as possible.”
As for delivery, he explained that that happens at irregular times and in unmarked vans. Essentially, traffic flow wouldn’t be any greater than it is now, and could even be less frequent.
“And these aren’t shipping containers,” he said. “These are smaller vans that are indistinguishable from something a plumber or a contractor would use.”
Anyone interested in attending Tuesday’s community outreach meeting can join at bit.ly/3cvVsgg.
Mary Byrne can be reached at [email protected] or 413-930-4429. Twitter: @MaryEByrne