WARREN, Mich – The city of Warren finds itself in legal trouble after a Macomb County judge ruled that its marijuana licensing process under the former city council was done in secret and violated the Open Meetings Act.
The 15 licenses the city approved in 2019 were deemed invalid. Warren is currently being sued by 31 marijuana business owners over that process.
Wednesday night, the current Warren City Council was presented with a settlement which includes 28 new licenses instead of the original 15. According to a press release, the settlement would result in a dismissal of the litigation involving the 31 businesses seeking damages against the city for the the alleged violation in the 2019 application process.
A map of the proposed settlement shows businesses clustered along Dequindre Road and Groesbeck Highway. The council is putting the map up for residents to look at and offer input.
“We want this to be settled, but when we do that, it has to be done with the interests of the residents in mind,” said Council President Patrick Green. “The marijuana industry is coming back saying they want 28, and because this involved in litigation, we have to seriously consider it,” Green said.
A lawyer representing Mayor Fouts told the council Tuesday night he approves of this settlement. Calls to Mayor Fouts were not immediately returned.
Residents can email the city council at Citycouncil@cityofwarren.org to express their thoughts and opinions on the settlement.