ELIOT, Maine — Three “straw poll” questions that may be part of Town Meeting voting June were discussed by the Select Board Thursday. These would be non-binding votes to help guide the board on town policies.
Two of the questions are the result of last November’s vote legalizing recreational use of marijuana and retail operations. One asks should the town allow retail marijuana sales “if limited in number and restricted in location.” The other question asks if marijuana social clubs should be allowed under the same restrictions.
The board in November approved a moratorium on allowing retail marijuana sales, but later found out it is not valid as a town vote is needed. The moratorium’s intent was to allow the Planning Board time to enact zoning regulations. The Maine Department of Agriculture will need several months to come up with rules regarding recreational marijuana. With that time frame, Town Manager Dana Lee said a town marijuana moratorium may be on the November ballot.
The third question asks if the town should set aside tax money for the Eliot Land Bank, a fund used to purchase land for conservation. The Land Bank question asks if voters would favor setting aside an amount of tax money to be determined each year for land conservation. The Land Bank currently has almost $72,000. Voters will be asked in June to approve $40,000 of that to assist the Great Works Regional Land Trust in purchasing the Goodwin Farm on Goodwin Road.