Coralville, Iowa City mayors support medical marijuana dispensar - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Coralville, Iowa City mayors support medical marijuana dispensary

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Marijuana will soon be grown in Iowa, legally, but for medical purposes.

The use of cannabis oil is currently legal in Iowa, and it will soon be able to be bought and sold here, after former Governor Terry Branstad signed a new law in May. The marijuana will be grown in Des Moines by the company MedPharm, which will process the plant into oils.

Up to five locations will be allowed by the Iowa Department of Public Health to act as dispensaries for the product -- where people with valid medical registration cards can obtain the cannabis.

In total, the department received 21 applications from across the state for dispensaries. One of those applications came from the city of Coralville.

Coralville Mayor John Lundell wrote to the department declaring support for an in-town dispensary.

"I see it as a service to the community and to southeast Iowa. I saw the testimony, in the state legislature, when this was approved and the many stories of parents who had the agonizing stories of their kids that suffer from illnesses that benefit from this type of oil," Lundell told KWWL.

He said the idea was discussed amongst the city council, who were all in support of a dispensary. Since then, he said, no one has come forward against one.

One city over in Iowa City, Mayor Jim Throgmorton also announced his support for Iowa City to become a home to a new dispensary per a letter sent to the director of public health on Wednesday. In the letter, Throgmorton said Iowa City's emphasis on health care would make it an ideal location. Both the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics and Mercy Hospital are located in the city.

With UI medical offices also in Coralville, Lundell agreed with that sentiment. He said it would be convenient for patients prescribed to the medicine to be able to pick it up on their way out.

Lundell also said a dispensary would add to what Coralville has to offer for people that visit.

"It's one more reason for folks to come to Coralville, and while they're here shop the mall or shop at the river landing. So, it's just one more attraction to this community," he said.

The Department of Public Health is expected to announce which locations will get a dispensary on April 1.

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