ARDMORE, Okla. (KXII) - A new ordinance regulating medical marijuana is in place in Ardmore just four days before the state starts accepting application submissions for licenses.
"When we implement the ordinance with the rules and with the penalties we are simply trying to take care of the health, safety and welfare of all citizens in Ardmore," Mayor Sheryl Ellis said.
Anyone who wants to sell or grow marijuana in Ardmore will have to pay an application fee of $500 and another $2,000 for the city approved permit.
That's in addition to the $2,500 application fee the state requires.
Potential dispensary owners like Todd Larkin say it's just too costly.
"We knew there were going to be a lot of fees to this but when the city starts tacking on more fees than what the state requires, it's pretty disappointing," Larkin said. "In my views, it's like they don't want us in Ardmore."
There's no estimate yet on how much it cost crafting the ordinance but Mayor Ellis believes the cost of fees is reasonable.
"When we instituted the fees, we instituted they are not burdensome," Mayor Ellis said. "They cover the cost of all the work, the research, time, the money, the effort (and) the legal fees in writing this ordinance."
The ordinance requires outdoor growers to have at least a 6 ft. tall fence around their crop, that you can't see through, with a locked gate.
Growers have to have specific ventilation and lighting that complies with municipal building and fire codes.
Just a few of the regulations passed during the City Commissioners meeting Monday without any public input.
"Adding these fees and restrictions that they put in place are going to push people out," Larkin said. "They are not going to want to put a dispensary in Ardmore."
"We would expect as we go through time and we work with this ordinance, there will be amendments that could be more restrictive or could be more lenient," Mayor Ellis said. "We'll just see how it works."
You can find the ordinance here: https://www.ardmorecity.org/AgendaCenter/ViewFile/Item/4122?fileID=2830
You can find the cost of fee's here: