Recreational marijuana is coming to New Jersey, but it won’t be on every corner.
In Philadelphia’s South Jersey suburbs, 40 of 100 municipalities have opened their doors to cannabis businesses within their borders under New Jersey’s legalization law, which was signed in February and allowed towns to ban marijuana businesses ― but not the delivery of cannabis to residents.
The number of towns allowing cannabis businesses is expected to grow. Some of the 60 that opted out, such as the city of Camden and Bellmawr, did so by an August deadline to gain more time to write local regulations but intend to allow at least some of the law’s six types of cannabis businesses.
Some local New Jersey officials, including in Camden, have expressed enthusiasm for the arrival of the recreational cannabis industry as a way to spur local commerce. Statewide, the industry is expected to quickly reach $1 billion in sales, boosted by Pennsylvanians trekking across the Delaware River. Medical cannabis has been allowed since 2010.
“There is an opportunity to move the city in a different direction, to build and stimulate the economy using this legislation as a leverage tool,” Dwaine Williams, Camden’s affirmative action officer and a member of the Cannabis Ad Hoc Committee, told Camden City Council during a Sept. 7 hearing.