MARYSVILLE — The city’s moratorium on collective gardens for medical marijuana could last another six months.

A public hearing is scheduled during Monday night’s City Council meeting to consider extending a moratorium on the collective gardens, said city administrator Gloria Hirashima. The meeting is set to begin at 7 p.m. in the Marysville City Hall council chambers at 1049 State Ave.

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A six-month moratorium on the collective gardens was unanimously approved in July and is set to expire Jan. 5.

The collective gardens issue is expected to be a discussion topic at another meeting Jan. 10 between the council and the city’s Planning Commission, Hirashima said.

“We’ll probably be looking at zoning strategy for the gardens,” Hirashima said. “At this point we’re operating under an understanding that we’ll need to adopt some sort of zoning control within six months.”

Govs. Chris Gregoire and Lincoln Chafee of Rhode Island petitioned the federal government in November to remove marijuana from the list of controlled substances and allow its legal distribution for medical use. A voter initiative in 1998 legalized medical marijuana in Washington.

Gregoire in the spring left in the state’s medical marijuana bill provisions that allow for collective marijuana gardens. Up to 10 qualifying patients can grow 45 plants at a collective garden under the state law. Cities are allowed to license, zone and impose health and safety requirements on the gardens.

City officials had hoped state and federal lawmakers would decide on more clear medical marijuana laws before having to make any local decisions on the matter, Hirashima said.

“Most of the cities in the state are probably operating with a moratorium in absence of having local regulations,” she said.

Amy Daybert: 425-339-3491; [email protected]

Source: Medical pot garden delay? | – Local news