West Springfield Mayor sends out survey on reconsideration of marijuana sales ban

West Springfield Mayor sends out survey on reconsideration of Marijuana sales ban
Published: Apr. 8, 2022 at 8:20 PM EDT
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WEST SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB/WSHM) -Now that marijuana has been legal in Massachusetts for six years, the mayor of West Springfield has posted a survey on Facebook to find out if people living in his town would be willing to reconsider their original vote to ban pot shops.

“I’ve been on Facebook I’ve seen the survey I’ve taken the survey and yeah I’m for it,” said one West Springfield resident.

A survey posted by West Springfield Mayor Will Reichelt has been circulating on social media. Mayor Reichelt asked residents to weigh in on retail sales of marijuana in the community.

Recreational marijuana was originally legalized in the state back in 2016. In 2018, West Springfield voted against the option to sell recreational marijuana.

“That was at a time when recreational sales any kind of dispensaries in North East so there’s nothing to compare it to,” said Mayor Reichelt.

Now, six years later, Mayor Reichelt is asking for the community to reevaluate the decision.

Western Mass News spoke with one West Springfield resident who wished to remain off-camera. He told us that after witnessing the success in neighboring towns, he would love to see legal cannabis reach West Springfield.

“I think it would be great for the town and all the tax revenue money from the tax money that would come in from it would be good for us,” said the West Springfield resident.

Mayor Reichelt told Western Mass news he would like to give the Bill another chance, now that people finally get to see what recreational dispensaries are like, especially after seeing data showing the number of West Side residents who travel to other towns to purchase cannabis.

“So they’re leaving our community giving their tax money to other places and then coming back here to West Springfield,” explained Mayor Reichelt.

We spoke with another West Springfield resident, Treasure Davison who said although it doesn’t personally affect her, she still thinks it could bring positive changes to West Springfield.

“I feel that the other communities have flourished. there hasn’t really been any negative impact that I can see so if it’s legal then I feel like it may have more benefits than negatives,” said Davidson.

Mayor Reichelt told Western Mass News that he believes a lot has changed in the overall perception of marijuana and he hopes residents will keep an open mind.

“I don’t think the average persons even gonna know that this new business is allowed, if you do partake in recreational marijuana, it will be easier, you won’t have to drive to over communities, but overall I don’t think this will have an impact on anyone’s lives except maybe keep their tax bill a little lower,” said Mayor Reichelt.

The Mayor said a public hearing on legalized cannabis is also being planned.