CG implements 12-month CBD sales moratorium

By Dan Solovitz

While Minnesota has entered the national stage of legal THC, the Cottage Grove City Council has pushed the “pause button” for any future CBD and cannabis sales venues within the city for one year, awaiting further data from surrounding communities.

As of July 20, businesses that presently have a license to sell CBD and other cannabinoid products, now legal in Minnesota to contain THC up to 5 mg, will not be allowed to expand upon their current product. No new businesses may open with the purpose of selling these products, and no new vendor sales will be approved within the moratorium period.

City Attorney Kori Land stated, “Even a month ago I would’ve said I knew where we were, and where things were going, until everyone realized the legislature had thrown a curveball into their last-minute adoption of a very large omnibus bill.”

The Minnesota legislature’s legalization of products containing THC was a surprise, but now local communities are left to decide how they want to manage it.

Land continued, “That law basically defined certain CBD uses that contain THC, that would be legally able to be sold in the state of Minnesota. It is a one of a kind. There is no other state in the United States that has a similar law.”

She suggested that many cities have differing views on the subject, regarding what can be sold, and how.

“Many cities are taking the same approach that



we’re recommending tonight, which is, we need to take just a little bit of time to study the issues, determine where these uses are appropriate, how they should be best monitored by the city if needed, whether that be through zoning, licensing, or both. And so the only way to do that, there’s a tool in law called an Interim Use Ordinance, and it is a moratorium, that just takes a time out so that the city can study the issue and then come back with appropriate regulations as the policy makers feel are best suited for this community,” said Land.

Mayor Myron Bailey voiced his acknowledgement of the statewide legalization and potential future ramifications, saying, “Eventually it’ll be here and we’ll change the ordinance, but we also want to make sure there are pretty specific parameters in place.”

Land added, “The effect that it has on existing businesses that are already selling these products, they can continue to sell in the same manner and volume and type that they are doing so today. They cannot expand once this moratorium is adopted. Nor can any new businesses choose to sell these products or open for business.”

Council Member Tony Khambata moved to pass the moratorium; it was seconded by Justin Olsen, and was passed unanimously. Ordinance 1060, prohibiting the establishment of new uses, or the expansion of existing uses, related to cannabis and non-intoxicating cannabinoids, CBD sales, testing, or distribution for one year has been passed.

The moratorium can be lifted by the council at any time during the year, but will be officially revisited in 2023.

August 3, 2022