Webster town supervisor advocating for recreational marijuana retail shops; not for lounges

WEBSTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — A public hearing on the future of recreational marijuana in Webster was held Thursday night.

Webster Town Supervisor Tom Flaherty says six months of researching the pros and cons led to this decision.

Flaherty says he toured a hemp processing facility near the Rochester Airport and had multiple meetings to discuss the pros and the cons.

"The retail outlet is like a liquor store for alcohol. You can buy alcohol there but you cannot consume on-site. The lounge is like a bar/tavern/pub for alcohol. You buy it there and consume it there in a social setting," Flaherty said.

That was the difference for Flaherty to opt-in for a retail shop but opt-out for the lounge.

Another meeting will likely be held on Dec. 16 at 7:30 p.m.

Localities have until the end of the month to decide. Localities that opt-out will miss out on the tax revenue recreational sales generate.

"Up to 3% of the overall Webster budget can be generated by recreational marijuana at a conservative level and ultimately when it comes down to it you can possess up to 5 pounds in your home, 3 ounces on your person and bring it from a locality that decides to opt-in so it’s really not a decision over marijuana being allowed here it’s about whether Webster wants to receive tax dollars on it," said hemp processing facility owner Kenneth Gregory.

Gates has opted out of allowing recreational marijuana to be sold or consumed within town limits and Irondequoit has opted in.