Local News

Legal Challenge Threatened Over Legal Marijuana

(Three Oaks, MI) - The door has opened for the sale of marijuana in Three Oaks, Michigan, but a legal challenge could be looming.


The Three Oaks Planning Commission on May 4 unanimously approved an application for a special land use permit from Bloom Operations, LLC.


The company licensed to sell recreational and medical marijuana in Michigan would operate from an existing facility at 6761 W. U.S 12 in Three Oaks.


Approval of the application for a special land use permit will be given final consideration by the Three Oaks Village Council. Final approval could result in legal action by Darrin Malek, an attorney representing Exclusive Healing. Malek said Exclusive Healing occupies the property under a lease with Dennis Grosse.


Malek said the special land use application indicates a purchase agreement for the property has been reached between Grosse and Bloom Operations, LLC., but the lease is between Grosse and his client. Therefore, Malek said the special land use application is improper because there’s no lease agreement between his client and “the true owner of the property.”


Malek also alleged the minutes from a previous Planning Commission meeting were not accurate.


He said the minutes reflect a motion was made to clarify questions regarding ownership of the property. Still, the motion was actually to meet with the village attorney on how to proceed.


“I have a recording of that, and I’m glad to share that with you,” Malek said.


Malek also said consideration of the special land use application was tabled indefinitely, but the minutes reflect the matter was tabled specifically until May 4.


“It’s not accurate.  That’s not what the motion indicated,” he said.


Malek said other issues include, “we don’t know if Grosse sold the property based on a land contract, an installment purchase, or some other means.”


Planning Commission Chairman Gene Svebakken said Grosse is the current holder of the deed, and there’s a right for a legal challenge for deciding who has control of the property.


“My understanding from our legal counsel is it is a valid application. If the courts need to sort this out, then the courts can do that.   That’s not the role of the Planning Commission,” he said.


Svebakken said the Planning Commission also plans to process the application for a special land use permit expected from Exclusive Healing.


The Planning Commission also tabled a request from Highway Horticulture out of Portage, Michigan, to operate a marijuana dispensary at 300 E. Ash St.


Svebakken said the paperwork submitted by the company appeared insufficient to constitute a full site plan, and postponing the hearing another month will allow a preliminary review to be completed.

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