Bergen, Burlington, Camden and Monmouth counties appear to lead the pack when it comes to communities giving a green light for legal weed businesses — either medical or recreational sales or cultivation of cannabis—under updated state regulations.

At least 14 communities in Bergen and nearly a dozen in Burlington have opted to allow some form of regulated cannabis business, while eight communities each in Camden and Monmouth counties have opted in.

In Milltown, voters have the final say while casting ballots in November.

Milltown Borough Council adopted an ordinance back in July that prohibits all marijuana businesses, including medical marijuana facilities, but also put a question on the ballot asking whether licensed retailers should be allowed to have shops within two areas at the center of the community.

Municipalities had until late summer to pass new bans on legal marijuana operations.

The ​​Council was hosting an open forum Thursday, on the non-binding cannabis referendum question being posed to voters on Nov. 2.

As of early October, there were 23 medical marijuana dispensaries, or Alternative Treatment Centers open across the state, with more in the queue as the New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Commission could award licenses to new medical marijuana cultivation centers at its meeting on Friday.

Municipalities had until late summer to pass new bans on legal marijuana operations in town, and a majority did — about 63% said they would pass “for now.”

Newly adopted rules establish the state’s recreational cannabis industry. When licensed dispensaries are opened, adults over 21 years old will be able to purchase and possess up to an ounce of cannabis, under the state’s Cannabis Regulatory, Enforcement Assistance, and Marketplace Modernization Act.

An unofficial count by the New Jersey State League of Municipalities from August found that 360 communities had opted out and 90 had opted in, just before the deadline for ordinances blocking marijuana businesses. It didn’t yet have information on 115 others, at that point.

The following list by county includes those that had opted into some form of licensed marijuana operations, either for medical or recreational use, based on the previous league survey and current dispensary and cultivation sites.

Atlantic County

Atlantic City (existing medical marijuana dispensary)
Egg Harbor Township (existing medical marijuana dispensary)
Absecon
Galloway
Pleasantville

Bergen County

Paramus (existing medical marijuana dispensary)
Rochelle Park (existing medical marijuana dispensary)
Cliffside Park
Elmwood Park
Fair Lawn
Fort Lee
Garfield
Hackensack
Lodi
Maywood
Moonachie
North Arlington
Rutherford
Saddle Brook
Teaneck
Wood-Ridge

Burlington County

Bordentown City (existing medical marijuana dispensary)
Edgewater Park (existing medical marijuana dispensary)
Bass River
Burlington City
Cinnaminson
Delran
Eastampton
Evesham
Lumberton
Mount Holly
Riverside
Shamong

(Photo by Jeff W @fortheloveofsmoke on Unsplash)

Camden County

Bellmawr (existing medical marijuana dispensary)
Williamstown (existing medical marijuana dispensary)
Barrington
Collingswood
Gibbsboro
Oaklyn
Pennsauken
Somerdale
Voorhees
Waterford

Cape May County

Woodbine

Cumberland County

Bridgeton
Millville
Vineland (existing medical marijuana dispensary)

Apothacarium dispensary in Maplewood (courtesy Apothacarium Maplewood)

Essex County

Bloomfield (existing medical marijuana dispensary)
Maplewood (existing medical marijuana dispensary)
Montclair (existing medical marijuana dispensary)
Belleville
Irvington
West Orange

Gloucester County

Deptford (existing medical marijuana dispensary)
Elk
Franklin
Greenwich
Woodbury
Woolwich

Hudson County

Secaucus (existing medical marijuana dispensary)
Bayonne
East Newark
Jersey City

Ethan Miller

Hunterdon County

Readington (current cannabis cultivation for medicinal use)
Flemington
Lambertville

Mercer County

Ewing
Hamilton
Lawrence (existing medical marijuana dispensary)

Middlesex County

Cranbury (existing medical marijuana dispensary)
Woodbridge (existing medical marijuana dispensary)
Highland Park
New Brunswick
North Brunswick
South River

Zen Leaf dispensary in Elizabeth (Google Maps)

Monmouth County

Eatontown (existing medical marijuana dispensary)
Neptune (existing medical marijuana dispensary)
Aberdeen
Freehold Borough
Matawan
Neptune City
Ocean Township
Red Bank

Morris County

Boonton
Butler
Rockaway Borough
Rockaway Township

Passaic County

Paterson (existing medical marijuana dispensary)
Haledon
Passaic
West Milford

(Getty Stock)

Salem County

Lower Alloways Creek

Somerset County

Franklin
North Plainfield
Somerville
South Bound Brook

Sussex County

Andover Township
Lafayette (current cannabis cultivation for medicinal use)

Union County

Elizabeth (existing medical marijuana dispensary)
Union (existing medical marijuana dispensary)
Plainfield
Rahway

(The Apothecarium Dispensary Phillipsburg)

Warren County

Phillipsburg (existing medical marijuana dispensary)
Frelinghuysen
Hackettstown

With previous reporting by Michael Symons

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