COLUMBUS, Ohio — The owner of a wood-fired pizza shop in Columbus near Italian Village said he wants to create a safe space for his customers to smoke marijuana.
“It’s just such an interesting transition,” said Nick Gore, the owner of GoreMade Pizza.
This week, he’ll host the second “Fire it Up Friday,” inviting customers to smoke marijuana on the back patio.
“It was so beautiful,” Gore said about the first event last week. “It was so beautiful. Everyone here was so supportive.”
As some business owners like Gore embrace the new legal status of marijuana, other employers feel a sense of confusion of what’s allowed and what’s not.
“I know that a lot of bars and restaurants that already allow patio smoking,” said Rick Carfagna from the Ohio Chamber of Commerce. “There’s a big question mark as to whether they can allow individuals to partake in cannabis use on those patios. The Division of Liquor Control has offered guidance to say that it is still a controlled substance and they may be jeopardizing their liquor license if they allow it.”
On Thursday, the Ohio Chamber of Commerce hosted a free webinar for employers with employment lawyers to help answer questions.
“Part of the ballot initiative was to treat marijuana like alcohol,” said Jan Hensel, an employment lawyer. “The problem this presents for employers however is marijuana stays in the system for longer than alcohol does. So an employee…