In daily news, it is reported that the Anchorage Assembly is deciding on whether to open the marijuana retail store near the church or not.
AlaskaSense LLC is planning to open a marijuana retail store on the space beside the Downtown Soup Kitchen Hope Centre, which is next to the women’s shelter in Anchorage.
The space near the Soup Kitchen and women’s shelter belongs to the Texas ministry, which is also known as Hope Church. As it is a sacred space, many people are offended by this plan.
The center’s board explained AlaskaSense to drop the opposition to the business. But, again, the decision is still pending. On the other hand, Smadi Warden, the owner of AlaskaSense, spent $400,000 on rent and renovations, and now, zoning regulations have put the decision down.
Warden requested a church ordinance protector to save the church from the marijuana retailers. The assembly denied the request of the warden.
According to the warden, the place was initially approved, and no question was asked if the Hope centre was a church or not. The warden was paying the rent for three years to remain that area as a church.
On the other hand, the soup kitchen was not an approved place. It also prevented the marijuana store business within 61 m area. AlaskaSense wanted the shop in 17 m areas from the Hope Center. Warden said that they fought for the church area like the Soup Kitchen, but unfortunately, they lost the fight.
The executive director of the Hope Centre, Sherrie Laurie, said that this operation by AlaskaSense, on religions and Anchorage is following the protocol.