Branson medical marijuana dispensary approved

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BRANSON, Mo.– Out of thousands of applications for medical marijuana dispensaries, less than 200 were rewarded across the state last week, and only one was approved in Branson.

A building on the corner of Wildwood Drive and Green Mountain Drive, where the Lone Star Steakhouse was, is expected to turn into the first medical marijuana dispensary in Branson.

“It’s not too dissimilar from a normal business in that it is based on the zoning code,” said Joel Hornickel, the director of planning & development at the city of Branson. “There’s no special use permit other than the business license process that someone will have to go through.”

KOLR10 spoke to surrounding local businesses, including motels and some mini-golf places. Some say they are a bit concerned about a dispensary being so close, but some say they don’t think it’ll be a problem at all. If some do have a problem with it, there isn’t much one could do besides letting elected officials know.

“And that’s something then the board would have to take into consideration whether they make additional adjustments to the zoning code that may prevent that type of situation from happening in the future,” said Hornickel.

It is located in a general commercial district which means whether it’s a hotel, theater or a dispensary, they are able to be within the district and be right next to other businesses. There are other rules the dispensaries have to follow as well, besides having to be away from residents and schools.

“Hours of operation, in some instances they have to have a security guard on the premise at all times, how the facility itself is laid out, things like that, how well the parking lot is lit,” said Hornickel.

Here is the full city ordinance of Branson’s “Municipal Code Pertaining to Medical Marijuana,” and the staff report:

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