We’ve got a problem.
For over a year now, requests have been made to our Select Board to find out what exactly is happening with a business that really ought to be up and running by now. Normally, the “government” keeps its nose out of the goings-on of private businesses. However, an exception is made when a business needs municipal permission, i.e., a license, in order to open. And such is the case with the license to operate a recreational cannabis shop in Littleton.
Littleton had two licenses to award. One business owner opened his pot shop some time ago.
The other . . . well, it’s hard to know. Apparently, Littleton Select Board is having a difficult time getting in touch with the “operational powerhouse,” who touted her many skills and deep drive to open a shop in town. This communication dearth borders on the absurd when the self-described “operational powerhouse” is married to the chair of the Select Board.
Here’s the statement I made to the four board members NOT married to Christine Nordhaus, aka the “operational powerhouse,” last night at the Select Board Meeting:
Christine Nordhaus came before this board in the spring of 2020 and made a representation that she wanted to open a recreational cannabis retail store. I suspect this board believed her representation. The deal was: the town gives her a super lucrative license, and Littleton gets a 3% excise tax on everything she sells.
She’s had permission from the state to build out her shop since August of 2020, but if you drive by 160 Ayer Road, it looks like nothing’s happening.
And now, close three years have gone by and the Littleton Apothecary is not open.
Back in August, I wrote to this board with my concern about the non-operation of Littleton Apothecary. Since then, “HCA Update” has twice been put on the agenda.
The first time was on November 1st of last year, That “update” happened right before town meeting in the teacher’s lunchroom, where there are no cameras or audio recording. I’d suggest reading the minutes, but there are none. I happened to be there. The “HCA update” was town counsel relaying the fact that there’d been some changes in the law and advised this board to renegotiate their cannabis-related HCAs to comport with the change in the law.
So, on November 1st, there was no “update” about why Littleton Apothecary remains non-operational.
In February, I made a request from this podium that this board find out what the hold-up’s all about. I was told that it would be “looked into” and to expect an “update” in two weeks.
Two weeks later, I checked back. There was no “update.”
But then, there it was, on the agenda for March 13th: “HCA Update.” However, due to a lack of a quorum and heavy snow, the update was bumped to the next meeting, two weeks later, which was two weeks ago.
And on March 27th, what the public heard during that “HCA Update” was the four of you being walked through the renegotiated HCA contracts by Littleton’s town counsel. Basically, it was a housekeeping matter, which seemed to indicate that Christine Nordhaus and this board did, in fact, renegotiate Littleton Apothecary’s dormant three-year-old HCA.
During those negotiations, did anyone think to ask, “Hey, ya’ gonna open the pot shop or not?”
I’m sure it’s uncomfortable—with Matthew being the chair of this board—for the four of you to figure out why such a lucrative license would go unused for years, but our interest as a town to secure a revenue stream through that license should overshadow any social awkwardness you might feel.
Just call her up and gets her down here so she can explain herself.
Littleton taxpayers deserve a real update.
See you in two weeks.
So, in an attempt to solve the mystery, I’m turning to you.
If you have any idea as to why Littleton Apothecary is not open, I’d love to hear from you. Sign-up for my Substack (FREE) by choosing “NONE,” and I’ll keep you all posted on this on-going issue.
3 thoughts on “To the People of My Hometown”
I’ve long been fascinated by your ability to manufacture evidence to support whatever false narrative you’re currently perpetuating. (Too bad that doesn’t translate into good writing because seriously, you’re nigh unreadable. But I digress.) Like that time you resigned from the Select Board and lied to to the voters about why.
My understanding of your resignation (from court documents you signed under the pains and penalties of perjury) is that you were facing a sexual harassment charge stemming from the town’s discovery of inappropriate communications by you to a subordinate, and that you attempted to blackmail your victim into affecting town business. You told the voters something else and somehow manufactured a narrative that YOU were the one being manipulated.
My point is that after your statement at Monday’s meeting, Vice Chair Gary Wilson absolutely answered your question. I’ll refer you to the recording of the meeting, but to paraphrase here: The town can’t make me do anything outside the terms of the legal documents in place, all of which I am in full compliance with. No amount of overwrought blather and manufactured insinuation that Matthew has some nefarious hand in all this is going to change the facts of law. I mean, you’re an attorney for goodness sake, you should know this. But then again, you also call yourself a writer.
Sure I get that you’re curious, but you’re not entitled to any information. It’s none of your business. If other folks want to know what’s up with Littleton Apothecary, give me a shout.
Oh yeah, and that stuff Chuck said in an earlier meeting about me being hard to reach was untrue. The town of Littleton has made no attempt to contact me about anything, probably because they know the actual facts and stand behind the legal documentation they also signed.
Chuck (who has my number just like the former town administrator and town counsel do) texted me to apologize for making that false statement and said he’d correct it Monday. I think he tried, but it’s hard to tell. That’s our Chuck, I guess.