BILLINGS — The Billings City Council increased the available medical marijuana dispensary licenses in the city from four to eight at its Monday night meeting.

The Council’s marijuana discussion was part of a months-long effort to craft marijuana business laws and zoning laws for Billings. The Council passed second readings on both the business and zoning laws on Monday night.

A third reading on both draft laws is expected to take place at a Council meeting on Nov. 15, when the new laws will likely be put on the books.

The increase to the number of medical dispensaries comes after Billings voters said no to recreational marijuana dispensaries opening up in the city limits in an election last week.

MTN News / Mitch Lagge A medical marijuana dispensary display at a business near Billings.

A previous draft of the city law had four medical dispensary licenses and four recreational dispensary licenses available in the city. Since voters prohibited the recreational shops in the election, no recreational dispensaries will be allowed a business license.

The change to the amount of licenses was initiated by Councilmember Penny Ronning, who represents Ward 4 underneath the Billings Rimrocks.

Ronning said she’s met with

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