In its first meeting of 2019, the Warrensburg City Council approved an ordinance regarding the sale of medical marijuana within the city limits.

After viewing several maps assembled by staff, Council decided to establish a buffer zone of 250 feet from any existing school, day care, church, library and park for new businesses selling medical marijuana.

The ordinance excluded packaged liquor sales from the equation.

Councilwoman Robin Allen and Mayor Danielle Johnston both voted no, but the ordinance passed on second reading with the remaining yes votes.

The Council had some guidance from City Manager Harold Stewart, who said that Council should consider the long-range aspects of the ordinance and do what is appropriate for Warrensburg. Stewart noted that with the legality of medical marijuana in Missouri, there may come a time in the future when recreational marijuana is also legalized.

At the Dec. 10 City Council meeting, a public hearing was held and a proposed ordinance regulating marijuana uses was read by title for the first time.

During discussion of the ordinance, City Council directed staff to bring back additional maps and information for consideration at the January meeting..

Not all of the separation requirements were able to be mapped in time for the meeting, it was noted.

Primarily, the location of schools and churches as those are not licensed by the City so a comprehensive list of address points did not already exist. However, a majority of schools and churches are located in residential districts so they overlap with the buffer around residential districts.

Notable exceptions include the Lutheran Church, Nazarene Church, Northern Hills Baptist Church, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and First Baptist Church.