Cannabis questions raised at Woolwich Town Hall meeting

WOOLWICH TWP. —  During the Woolwich Township Town Hall meeting on May 14, Mayor Natalie Matthias and Committeeman Francis McGovern Jr. addressed questions and concerns sparked by Woolwich residents regarding cannabis cultivation, warehouse development, and highway reconstruction in the township.

With the legalization of cannabis in the state of New Jersey, Woolwich Township finds itself at the intersection of regulatory changes and community considerations. While the prospect of a dispensary in the township remains uncertain, discussions surrounding cannabis cultivation have taken center stage at the recent town hall meeting, shedding light on both opportunities and challenges for the community.

Matthias and McGovern have outlined plans for cannabis cultivation in Woolwich Township. The cultivation will take the form of an outdoor grow farm with the possibility of a micro grow facility as well, with strict guidelines regarding property size, security, and odor control. Matthias stressed the regulation of a minimum 60-acre property, with a designated three-acre group canopy and buffering around the edges to mitigate potential odor concerns for neighboring residents.

Residents expressed worries about safety repercussions with the possibility of the cannabis industry expanding to Woolwich, with a resident stating, “We don’t want marijuana in Woolwich.”

Matthias assured residents that these facilities will be subject to 24/7 monitored security, ensuring compliance with state regulations, and safeguarding the community. She also made a note to add that Woolwich plans to model after other towns like West Deptford and Woodbury, who have both welcomed cannabis industries into their municipalities.

Through a revenue-sharing agreement, the township stands to receive 2 percent of the sales from cannabis products, providing a tangible economic boost. Additionally, the township retains the authority to determine the number of licenses issued, with current plans allowing for three licenses. According to Matthias, one will be set aside for micro growth, one for outdoor growth, and a third will be pocketed for other opportunities.

Plans for the widening of turnpike lanes from exit 4 to the Delaware Memorial Bridge by the Turnpike authorities were also addressed, signaling progress in alleviating traffic congestion and connectivity. The turnpike reconstruction is a phase 4 plan, so it will be around 10 plus years before the widening goes into effect. When it does go into effect, residents can expect to see additional lanes being added on either side.

Additionally, reconstruction plans for the bridge on 322 that crosses the turnpike are also in motion. This is a Phase 1 plan so construction will be more rapid with bidding set to commence next year.

This reconstruction plan is being funded solely by New Jersey toll dollars and is being done in hopes of confronting the rapid warehousing and commercial truck traffic between Woolwich and Logan Township due to the over nine million square feet that is devoted to these facilities. Residents can expect to see lanes that will go in each direction as well as a full breakdown lane. A sound study is also set to be conducted, and those results will determine where sound walls will be needed as well.

By Asiya Robinson

One Response

  1. How does one imbibe cannabis? If by smoking, I am opposed to all smoking. It killed the most beloved person in my life. I shun addicts too, hatefully, imposing as much adversity as legal. I urge all like minded to do the same.

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