News - Joliet and Will County

Joliet City Council rejects third marijuana store

Emerald Coast wanted to open on Jefferson Street

A plan for a cannabis dispensary on Jefferson Street failed for lack of a second to a motion at the Joliet City Council meeting on Tuesday.

No one on the council was willing to second Councilman Cesar Guerrero’s motion to approve the marijuana store, which would go into the former Bakers Square restaurant at 2211 W. Jefferson St.

That means the proposal didn’t even make it to a vote despite support from city staff and the Joliet Zoning Board of Appeals.

But Mitch Zaveduk, vice president of real estate for Justice Cannabis Co., said the company will not give up.

“I think we’re going to come back and figure out a path to get this thing to work still,” Zaveduk said Wednesday.

Justice Cannabis Co. is affiliated with Emerald Coast, which wanted a special use permit to open a dispensary under the Bloc brand, which already operates in several states.

The dispensary would have been the third in Joliet, which has two Rise cannabis stores in the city.

Zaveduk said he was surprised by the council rejection, and was “not expecting to not even have an opportunity” to make a case for the dispensary.

Councilwoman Jan Quillman was the only council member to comment.

“I don’t think this is the right place for that business,” Quillman said.

Quillman noted the Star Inn motel is located behind the former restaurant building and asked whether there had been any report on calls for police service at the motel.

City Manager James Capparelli said there had been such a report but he did not have it at hand at the time.

Zaveduk made a case to the council for the dispensary after it was ruled dead for lack of a second to Guerrero’s motion to approve.

“We have found that when you add an adult-use facility you actually increase the security of the area,” Zaveduk said.

Zaveduk said there had been squatters living behind the Bakers Square building, before Emerald Coast moved in with expectations to occupy the empty restaurant building.

“What these folks don’t want is lights, cameras and security, and that’s exactly what we’re going to be adding,” he said.

Zaveduk said will make those points and others in an effort to resurrect the plan and bring it back to the council.