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VILLAGE OF TIVOLI BOARD OF TRUSTEES
LOCAL LAW C (PROPOSED) – CANNABIS
PUBLIC HEARING MINUTES
WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 13, 2021 – 7:00 PM
WATTS dePEYSTER HALL – TIVOLI, NY 12583
Present: Mayor Griffith, Deputy Mayor Majer, Trustee Ezrati, Trustee Baldino, Trustee Mangieri
Public: Russ Baker, Harry Colgan, Jeanette Canaday, Leslie Baker, Bob Zises, Eileen Digan, and Karen Cleaveland
The Village of Tivoli Board of Trustees held a public hearing on October 13, 2021 at the Historic Watts DePeyster Hall, Tivoli, NY. On a motion made by Deputy Mayor Majer and seconded by Trustee Ezrati; all in favor; Mayor Griffith opened the Public Hearing at 7:11 PM.
Mayor Griffith read the Public Hearing Notice; and waited for comments from the public.
Harry Colgan began by mentioning that he had surveyed many folks regarding this proposed law, and all, including Harry, are opposed. He spoke to an individual who gave a different opinion, however, there was only one who was opposed. He went on further to say that this law is not an easy fit.
Leslie Baker agreed with what Harry had to say.
Karen Cleaveland believed it was not appropriate as Tivoli is a family place and family oriented.
Harry Colgan brought up what to do regarding those who will potentially be smoking in public. Many added there is not much to do, as it is legal now.
Russ Baker provided information on how cannabis has negative impacts on the human brain up to the age of 28/29. He has counseled many men and women on drugs and alcohol. The availability of cannabis, along with the lax attitude of some parents could lead to trouble. He added there were 93,000 overdoses last year in this country. He spoke of his experiences in the field, and feels the logistics of a dispensary or café would be horrible.
Leslie Baker asked about the law being revisited. Mayor Griffith confirmed that not opting in is a “No” now, and the Village could opt in at a later date. But, a second law would have to be passed to annul the first law.
Leslie asked if residents could bring the law back up for another vote, or is it just the Village Board. Mayor Griffith added voters can petition to bring the issue back up again. Russ Baker asked if it was just registered voters who can request there be a new decision. Trustee Ezrati added that a person must be a resident for 6 months out of the year in order to be a voter and register to vote.
Trustee Ezrati added information that renters do in some form pay taxes through their rent, and could be eligible to vote. Mayor Griffith added that the same rules would apply for this referendum as does for residents to vote in the Village elections. Questions were raised about how many students live in the Village, Deputy Mayor Majer believed there were approximately 125 students who reside here.
Russ Baker added that things in the Village have been changing.
Eileen Digan and Mayor Griffith discussed how the majority of input is that people want to opt out.
Harry Colgan asked if a sample of legislation was provided from the State, Mayor Griffith said a law had been provided from the Village’s attorney.
The issue of people smoking on the sidewalk in public was brought up as it is now legal. Reducing this will be difficult as it will be legal for individuals 21 years old and up. The types of buildings where public smoking will be illegal was brought to the table, and Russ Baker mentioned it is illegal to smoke within 200 feet from a church; it is not allowed in public buildings, as is the rule for cigarette smoking.
Mayor Griffith said it appeared there was not much diversity in the room, and that basically everyone felt the same way, and would like to opt out.
Trustee Ezrati added that there would be zoning laws that would have to be passed if there were to be changes to the law in the future. She added that zoning laws would have to be appropriate for the potential lines and parking issues if the Village chose to opt in at a later date; and brought up the question of where could the Village facilitate a dispensary?
Mayor Griffith did confirm that a future Board of Trustees could change the law.
Russ Baker added that all were following democracy by allowing everyone to be heard.
Bob Zises asked about the opting in and opting out scenario, opting out now could change to opting in later, etc.
Mayor Griffith accepted the motion from Trustee Baldino to close the public hearing. On the motion made by Trustee Baldino, seconded by Trustee Mangieri, all in favor; the public hearing was closed at 7:30 PM.
Robin L. Bruno