POWER TO THE POT FACTORY: Several miles of expensive underground conduit is being constructed to fuel Abell Pot Factory, with no windmills or solar to help heal pain afflicted with marijuana byproducts
By KEN ROSSIGNOL
THE CHESAPEAKE TODAY
ABELL, MD. – A long run of underground electric transmission lines that will supercharge the new Pot Factory built and soon to operate full steam on the farm formerly owned by Charlie Mattingly is being built at a cost that could be millions of dollars.
According to SMECO spokesman Thomas Dennison, the cost of the construction is not being paid for by the customers of the cooperative but by the owners of the Medical Marijuana facility. Dennison did not have the figure for the cost since the expense is not being provided by SMECO and said that the power source is from the Milestown substation. The line may be about four miles from the substation to the Pot Factory at the intersection of Abell Road and Gerard’s Cove Road.
Charlie Mattingly was asked on August 19, 2022, if he knew what the cost of the electric service to the facility would run. “I’m involved in the retail side of the business, not the construction, and a lot of what we are doing right now is confidential.” Asked by THE CHESAPEAKE TODAY if there is a spokesman for the construction end, Mattingly said that he didn’t really know who to talk to but did say there had been a lot of construction changes for building the line from Milestown, which have affected the cost.
Playing 52 card pickup with shares of ownership
Maryland’s State Department of Assessments and Taxation records show that Mattingly transferred the controversial property to an out-of-state firm, Blue Griz LLC, in violation of the laws under which the facility is governed and was nearly fined $50,000. The law calls for any transfer in ownership to be pre-approved and criminal background checks performed, which the state commission ruled did not take place. (see ruling below)
The Pot Factory, which its owners take considerable effort in keeping their names private, has come under fire from neighbors as the St. Mary’s Board of Commissioners allowed the building to be constructed in a residential area, just a few hundred feet from Canoe Neck Creek, in a Critical Area. Commissioner Mike Hewitt is on the Critical Area Commission and said the project never came before him for approval, but he points to a December 4, 2018, meeting of the Board to say he was against it.
See ROOTS OF THE POT FACTORY (above) for a video of that Commissioner meeting. As seen in the video, the commissioner board was more concerned about the ages of those allowed to work in the Pot Factory rather than why in blue blazes is the Pot Factory being sited in Abell instead of an industrial park. The blame for the permitting circles around to former Land Use Director Phil Shire, according to several county commissioners, eager to shed the blame. The reasoning was that the pretense for the operation of medical marijuana grow operation was that it was a horticultural use and could be done as a greenhouse on a farm.
The Pot Factory is over an acre in size, surrounded by twenty-one HVAC units the size of tractor trailers, and when operating around the clock, may provide a noise level comparable to jet engines at the Patuxent River Naval Air Station.
The Abell Pot Factory may have the right to expand the existing facility under the terms of the prior permitting allowed by the Weed King Commissioners of St. Mary’s County.
On March 14, 2022, the Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission decided that Mattingly’s firm, Southern Maryland Relief LLC, violated the law seven times in regard to the transfer of ownership and issued two fines, one of $27,000 and another of $21,500.
SEVEN POINTS TERMINATED
The Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission of Maryland on June 21, 2022, terminated the license of the Seven Points Agro Therapeutics LLC facility that Reginald Alston reportedly sold part of 49% of the business to Story of Maryland LLC, owned by Charlie Mattingly at Abell, Maryland. The products and processing facility were supposed to be moved to Abell, Md, according to records of the MMCC.
Story of Maryland LLC operates a dispensary in Waldorf – on the up and up! And they are working hard to end the stigma of marijuana!
Reginald Alston was a major contributor to St. Mary’s States Attorney Richard Fritz’s losing campaign for reelection in 2022. Alston was not prosecuted for illegally bringing pot to the Pot Factory.
A DUMPSTER DIVE
A surprise inspection of the facility is detailed below in the attached PDF file of the order of the MMCC however, the results of the inspection revealed the operators were conducting the operation as if it were the inside of a dumpster located in a back alley of any crime-ridden city, hardly the pristine operation required to be providing medical ointments.
App Harvest operates the largest commercial greenhouse in North America at Morehead, Kentucky, with a 2.8 million-square-foot facility that will grow millions of tomatoes every year while only utilizing a fraction of the space needed in traditional growing operations, according to SpectrumNews1.com. The big greenhouse opened in 2020.