TRENTON – An official with the Montclair-area alternative treatment center that has received approval from the state to grow medicinal marijuana had mixed emotions at the news.
“Let’s just say it’s a step in the right direction. It’s been a long time coming,’’ said Julio Valentin Jr., chief operating officer for Greenleaf Compassion Center.
The center, which is still getting its dispensary ready, may be able to treat a couple of thousand patients once it’s up and running, Valentin said.
“It’s all about the patients,’’ said Valentin.
Whereas other proposed centers have been opposed by local zoning boards in other areas of the state, the Montclair center has the backing of local officials, according to Valentin, who said they obtained their OK last summer.
“We are completely compliant,’’ he said. “We have had no problems from the community.”
One of his partners had expressed frustration earlier this year with the state’s sluggish pace in granting approvals, Valentin said, but this decision giving Greenleaf a green light for growing medicinal marijuana will bring them closer to the goal of serving patients.