SCARBOROUGH — The town of Scarborough is one step closer in making amendments to the Marijuana Establishment Licensing Ordinance that would give cultivation facilities specific odor mitigation requirements.

On May 20, the Scarborough Ordinance Committee spoke in favor of proposed amendments to the Odor and Ventilation section of the ordinance.

Liam Gallagher, assistant town manager, said constituents have been most concerned about odor mitigation since the ordinance was adopted over a year ago.

In February, abutters of a facility on Snow Canning Road shared their concerns with the Town Council at a workshop.

“The proposed change puts the responsibility on both the marijuana establishment as well as the property owner,” Gallagher said. “This may be one in the same but as we’ve frequently talked about, one of the challenges of the Snow Canning Road facility is that there’s a single property owner and upwards of 15 license holders.”

With multiple tenants at a property, tracking an odor is challenging, he said.

“Trying to determine where the source of the odor originates is extremely difficult – frankly, it’s impossible,” Gallagher said.

The amendments would require cultivation facilities to install odor mitigation systems, according to the ordinance draft.

“This does not mean that non-cultivation establishments don’t need to have an odor mitigation system,” Gallagher said. “They still need to have a system and they still have the same performance expectation. We’re just going through this level of specificity for the known issue in town.”

Members of the committee voted in favor of the changes, but the ordinance amendments will need to go before Town Council for discussion and final approval.

Councilor Ken Johnson, a committee member, said that the marijuana business is a constantly changing industry.

We probably ought to proceed with this as a good starting point and just be aware, and I’m sure we will be aware because our residents will let us know,” he said.

Councilors Don Hamill, a committee member, and Jean-Marie Caterina, the committee chair, agreed.

I know people are anxious for us to do something, to get something out there,” Caterina said.

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