Nobo of Michigan, LLC has been granted the permits it needs to move forward with opening a medical marijuana production and processing facility in Benton Harbor. The Benton Harbor City Commission, after much discussion, granted permits to Nobo for growing and processing at a meeting Wednesday night. Commissioner Juanita Henry wanted more of a commitment from Nobo on creating local jobs and supporting the community.
“We need more jobs, and we need guarantees that there’s jobs,” Henry said. “you need to say in your agreement that management jobs will be available for Benton Harbor residents.”
Nobo CEO Alan Bonsett said the company is committed to working with Benton Harbor, and has wanted to locate in the city since the beginning. However, he also noted the company could have spent less to go somewhere else. He said additional delays would jeopardize the project.
“We want to make this our home, but we are out of time,” Bonsett said. “We have to do this. I’m not a billionaire, and we are working with money that we have borrowed form people who believe in us, and we are at the end of our road as far as executing here because it’s starting to not make business sense for us.”
Nobo will operate at the former Alreco Metals site at 900 Alreco Drive. It agreed to pay the Berrien County Land Bank $450,000 for the property. Bonsett said the outfit will employ 30 people initially, but possibly as many as 300 once all is up and running. He also stressed the operation believes in promoting from within its own ranks. Nobo has committed to hiring locals. Commissioners Henry and Ruthie Haralson voted against both permit.