Marijuana may be legal in NJ, but Ocean City has always been a dry town, and back in 2019, they prohibited the sale of weed, but now they have to re-do the ordinance. Ocean City Mayor Jay Gillian is pushing to keep the leaf out of the family-oriented beach town.
Gillian introduced an ordinance on Thursday to City Council that would prohibit marijuana sales and cultivation anywhere in Ocean City. Council voted unanimously in favor of the ordinance, and next there will be a public hearing and a final vote on April 8.
The move comes just weeks after the state of New Jersey legalized recreational marijuana use for people 21 and older.
Council members opposed to New Jersey's legalization law say it will bring more people to the beaches to smoke pot and encourages underage consumption. This ordinance would replace a similar one banning marijuana in the city that passed two years ago, when politicians in Trenton were previously trying to legalize recreational marijuana.
Ocean City's original ordinance became invalid – as were similar pot-sales prohibitions in dozens of other New Jersey towns– after Gov. Phil Murphy signed the new pot bills into state law Feb. 22, the Press of Atlantic City reported.
"I have asked City Council to adopt a new ordinance to reinstate these prohibitions," Gillian wrote in his Friday update on March 5. "The new legislation gives municipalities 180 days to do so."