A marijuana cultivation facility is one step closer to becoming Haines’ first commercial pot business. The state’s Marijuana Control Board approved the business’ application the same week the Haines Assembly reviewed it.
Erika Merklin applied for a license to operate Resurrected Dreams last summer.
If licensed, the marijuana cultivation facility will be located at 2618 Chilkat Lake Road, 26 miles out the Haines Highway.
Merklin’s application was deemed complete by the state earlier this month. At that point, the Haines Borough was notified. Local governments can protest or recommend the state issue a marijuana license within 60 days.
The assembly took it up at a meeting Tuesday.
Assemblyman Sean Maidy moved to recommend the license be issued. Tom Morphet seconded the motion.
“I want to second and also support recommending this,” said Morphet. “It seems like the regulations for these operations are more severe than handling plutonium.”
But Heather Lende suggested a different route — one of no objection.
“While I certainly don’t have an objection with this, I still — and while I know it’s legal and I know this is the way it — I am not sure personally that I would recommend it,” said Lende. “But I certainly wouldn’t object to it, because I know that’s what state law is.”
Brenda Josephson felt similarly.
“I do have discomfort saying we’d recommend it,” said Josephson. “I certainly have no objection to it.”
That’s the direction the group ultimately took. They voted unanimously to provide a letter to AMCO stating they have no objection to the state issuing a license.
A couple residents spoke if favor of Merklin’s application.
“I would encourage the borough to approve. If you’ve read the application, it’s very extensive and comprehensive. It’s an amazing facility,” said McCord.
“She is one of the most amazing gardeners,” said Carol Tuynman. “I think the standards that she holds herself to in terms of growing produce and flowers are really enviable. And she would be a great model in our community for best practices in her agricultural venture.”
Brad Adams spoke on behalf of Merklin at the meeting. He said Merklin was in Juneau at the Marijuana Control Board meeting. Adams assured the assembly the operation would be in a secure building.
“The structure is built basically a fortress,” said Adams. “Somebody trying to get in there, it would be almost impossible. Nothing is impossible, but it’s going to be fairly close to impossible.”
Now that Merklin’s application has been approved, there are still a few more steps before she can receive a license to operate, including a state inspection.
Merklin could not be reached for comment by the time this story was reported.
You can link to her application, including plans for cultivation, odor control, security and transportation here.