Brookline residents to decide on appointment-only pot shops

Brookline residents to decide on all pot shops being by appointment-only

BROOKLINE, Mass. — In Brookline, the popularity of one marijuana dispensary on Washington Street has created so much traffic that it could soon become appointment-only. The issue is expected to come up during the town meeting later this week.

If it passes the rules would go into effect for not only the current marijuana store, but all future ones in town.

The residents behind the petition site neighborhood concerns about traffic and parking as the biggest issues.

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"There's not a lot of parking around," said Patricia Perez, a NETA customer.

They say there have been issues with littering and with customers using marijuana outside the store. NETA says they are addressing the concerns.

"NETA has done a lot to really create efficiencies to make sure that we are moving people through the facility at an efficient rate," said Amanda Rositano, the NETA president. "And we are standing here at rush hour now, and I don't think that there is any indication is that our operation is increasing traffic at this time."

They also say they have created a green team to clean up trash and have added parking.

"We think that this appointment-only requirement is not necessary, and it's really concerning for our customers who want to be able to make sure that they can maintain their personal privacy, especially for a product that’s still federally illegal," Rositano said.

Some customers told Boston 25 News that they don't mind appointments but also say they don't always encounter crowds.

"I didn't have a line at all," Perez said. "I feel like I'm connected online in many other ways, so maybe I'm a little apathetic to that privacy that I guess."

NETA is the only store in town now, but another is expected to open in Coolidge Corner next year.

There is also a $1.4 million impact fee that was paid to the town that residents still have to decide what to do with in addition to this petition.

Residents are expected to take it all up on Thursday.