Well over a dozen residents took their turn at the podium, both during questioning and the open portion. Concerns included property zoning, parking lot location (directly abutting several homes in the Niles neighborhood), how it would allow Madison teenagers and young adults easy access, and how the business intends on monitoring security, but the primary worry was what was in it for Madison.
One resident asked why 1st Choice, which, while it did pass the strict regulations, was apparently in the bottom half of the ten approved, would come to “the number one town”. According to the applicant, the state did not provide feedback on why they were in the bottom half.
Several more were angry or highly concerned. Caitlin Santora asserted that the applicants were using “cute names” to “mask a drug-selling store”, adding “just because it’s legal doesn’t mean it’s right” and “I’ve seen these places, it’s not people going in to get relief for cancer”. Mike Walker quoted a Californian study from 2009 which allegedly showed a large increase in excess traffic, loitering, drug dealing, and murders in areas with marijuana dispensaries, and implored East Hanover and Chatham to “get ready”.