To the editor:
Kudos to your newspaper for its story on the cannabis cost report produced by Haverhill and the reaction of the chairman of the Cannabis Control Commission to the report’s conclusions.
As the chairman pointed out, there’s a “real issue” with these costs.
If there are actually $1.3 million in costs imposed by legal cannabis stores in Haverhill, why haven’t we heard or read about them before now? Wouldn’t the new police and school personnel the report claims were hired because of legal cannabis be subject to approval by the City Council? Shouldn’t there be more evidence of actual impacts?
It seems to me that these businesses have operated pretty much like any other businesses in Haverhill. I haven’t read about any sales to underage persons, or products sold legally in these stores ending up in schools.
It seems to me that this report is more about providing cover for unfair fee collection than it is about identifying actual costs presented by these businesses.
Some people may not like legalized cannabis, but it’s here, and Haverhill voters backed it. These businesses pay taxes, check IDs and create jobs. They should be treated the same as any other businesses in Haverhill and should not be forced to pay “impact fees” when there doesn’t appear to be any impact.
I ask that our elected city officials reject this report and its unsupported conclusions.