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Recreational marijuana business still banned in Vanderbilt

Max Johnston
Interlochen Public Radio

Recreational marijuana businesses are still banned in the village of Vanderbilt. A measure to reverse that ban failed by a vote of 72 to 84 Tuesday, according to unofficial election results.

Recreational marijuana was legalized in Michigan in November, but it’s up to individual cities and towns to let marijuana businesses operate in city limits.

The Vanderbilt Village Council initially banned them in March, but local activists got a measure that would have reversed that ban on the Aug. 6 ballot. It would have allowed up to 22 licensed establishments to operate within village limits.

Ryan Cottrell led the push to get the measure passed but says they may try to put it to another vote in the future.

“We might look at it again and see what our options are,” Cottrell says. “I think recreational marijuana scares some people.”

Vanderbilt was one of three communities in Michigan that voted on marijuana businesses Tuesday. 

Max came to IPR in 2017 as an environmental intern. In 2018, he returned to the station as a reporter and quickly took on leadership roles as Interim News Director and eventually Assignment Editor. Before joining IPR, Max worked as a news director and reporter at Michigan State University's student radio station WDBM. In 2018, he reported on a Title IX dispute with MSU in his story "Prompt, Thorough and Impartial." His work has also been heard on Michigan Radio, WDBM and WKAR in East Lansing and NPR.