Green River Cannabis gets community host agreement for 150 Hartford Avenue
Green River Cannabis Company has a signed Host Community Agreement for 150 Hartford Avenue, Unit C (highlighted in yellow). Image source: Dec. 12, 2022, meeting of the Hopedale Select Board.
By Theresa Knapp
After two years of trying, Green River Cannabis Company, Inc. has a host community agreement that was approved by the Hopedale Select Board, albeit contingent on the approval by the Attorney General of zoning changes made at November special town meeting.
Attorney and company part-owner Constant Poholek, Jr. has been working with the town since 2020 to find an approved site for his “high end” retail marijuana business, including locations at 54 Mellon Street, 5 Condon Way, and the now-approved 150 Hartford Avenue.
“We have a provisional license now so what we would be doing is basically transferring our license to this location,” said Poholek.
At a Nov. 14 special town meeting, residents voted to rezone the 150 Hartford Avenue location (and several others) from General Business to Commercial. The new zoning will go into effect once the vote is approved by the Attorney General’s Office.
At its meeting on Dec. 12, the Hopedale Select Board voted 2-1 to approve the HCA for Green River Cannabis at 150 Hartford Avenue, Unit C. Select Board members Bernie Stock and Chair Glenda Hazard were in favor, Brian Keyes was opposed because this location nearly abuts Caroline’s Cannabis on Charlesview Road.
“I fundamentally don’t believe that two retail establishments right next to each other is the best location and the best thing for Hopedale…I have a hard time getting behind this,” Keyes said.
"I believe that the three of you can co-exist," said Hazard, referring to the other marijuana establishments in town. She also noted that the November special town meeting had voted not to approve a citizen's petition to create a buffer zone between "like" businesses.
Audience members noted, in general, there are often hairdressers and barbers near each other, and several big box retailers or fast food restaurants near each other, and they typically survive.
Caroline Frankel, owner of Caroline’s Cannabis, asked the board not to sign the HCA and said putting another retail marijuana shop near her store would be bad for her business on nearby Charlsview Road. She also noted she is the only social-equity business in Hopedale for which the town will receive an additional one percent of tax revenue.
Once the town meeting votes are validated by the Attorney General, Green River Cannabis can proceed.