Mod: It would appear that the marijuana issue is sprouting everywhere. Cities that would never have considered enabling marijuana commerce within their precincts in the past are now beginning to smell the green. Cash that is, though they might be enjoying a big whiff of that other variety as well. Here in Sierra Madre the downtown folks are bringing in a new City Manager, someone who actually managed to balance the once at-risk General Fund of his former Colorado jurisdiction through enhanced sales taxation on its many new cannabis businesses and specialty medical dispensaries. What goes around, comes around. As they used to say. Below is an excerpt from an article that appeared yesterday in The San Diego Union-Tribune.
Encinitas may allow marijuana farms (The San Diego Union Tribune link): A North County city that was once known as the poinsettia-growing capital of the world is now exploring whether to allow some of its struggling flower farmers to cultivate marijuana as a way of preserving the city's agricultural heritage and keeping new housing from covering all the farmland.
The Encinitas City Council agreed Wednesday night to start collecting information that could be used to produce new regulations, including rules about where marijuana-growing operations could locate in town, what security measures the growers might need to provide, and how much they ought to pay in city taxes. The vote was 4-1, with Councilman Mark Muir opposed.
"I think our agricultural industry desperately needs this opportunity to compete," said Councilman Tony Kranz, who will serve on a subcommittee that will handle the issue.
For his part, Muir said he supported people's rights to use marijuana for medical reasons, but thought that allowing commercial marijuana growing in Encinitas would create a host of problems the city could do without. Encinitas shouldn't be considering replacing the poinsettia on its city seal with a marijuana leaf, he joked.
The impetus for the council’s debate was California's recent passage of Proposition 64. Approved by voters in November, it legalizes adult, non-medical use of marijuana, directs the state to establishes business regulations and imposes taxes on marijuana sales. The act's sections on recreational use and possession went into effect immediately, while the parts regarding regulatory control of marijuana sales businesses have until January 2018.
Cities across the state are now struggling to craft their own marijuana rules, including whether to allow commercial pot growing operations or just growing for personal use; whether to permit the manufacturing of products that contain marijuana; and whether to let retail stores sell the drug.
Adding to their challenges is the fact that it's illegal under federal law to use or possess marijuana. And, there's speculation that the nation's newly elected president might be more likely to enforce that federal law than his predecessor.
|Won't you let a flower grow?|
Councilwoman Tasha Boerner Horvath, who recently conducted a non-scientific Survey Monkey poll on residents' views on the new state law, said she thought the council ought to support storefront sales because residents appeared to want them. That's what she found with her informal poll and it was backed up by the city's vote totals for Proposition 64, she said, noting that Encinitas had the highest passage rate in San Diego County on the proposition.
"I struggle with the retail sales," Boerner Horvath said, mentioning that she has two elementary school-age children and worries about them being exposed to marijuana use. "My sense is yes, we should (allow the storefronts) because that's the will of the people."
Newly appointed Councilman Joe Mosca said he wanted the city to take a "slow and measured" approach to making changes in response to the new state law, and said he wasn't sure he had enough information that night to take a position on the various regulatory issues.
Mod: Yeah, but Joe did have enough information to vote "yes" on this item. Proving that his talent for taking two sides on an issue, and at the very same time, has not gone away. So will Encinitas eventually open pot shops within its city limits? Sure, why not? Just like any other CalPERS debt strapped California city, there is precious little they won't do for cash.
Here's a giant image of Putin caressing a pregnant Trump projected on a New York Apple store (Business Insider link):