25 January 2017

CW6 San Diego reported today


Board members will be presented with a variety of zoning options, including buffers with homes and schools ranging from 1,000 feet to one mile and requiring that a dispensary operator obtain a major use permit — an expensive and time-consuming process. The county Planning Commission, however,
has recommended that operators be required to get a less onerous minor use permit.

The options also include limiting the number of such operations in a given location — such as four per supervisorial district and two per community planning area — and extending the moratorium to Jan. 25, 2018. The current temporary prohibition on new dispensaries is due to expire on March 16.

Two medical marijuana dispensaries — near El Cajon and in Ramona — currently operate in unincorporated areas.

The El Cajon location at 8157 Wing Ave. has applied to the county for a building permit that would allow it to expand, according to county documents.

Four others who want to establish dispensaries — two in Ramona and one each in El Cajon and Valley Center — have also obtained building permits.

County officials estimate that as many as 23 properties could house such facilities under current regulations and that five could be operating soon because the moratorium doesn’t apply to them.

The regulations do not involve recreational marijuana enterprises, which are banned in unincorporated areas.

On Tuesday, the city of San Diego addressed recreational marijuana, which was legalized in California with November’s passage of Proposition 64. The City Council unanimously extended its moratorium on establishing recreational marijuana businesses for another 10 1/2 months, or until it can adopt regulations.

The council members are scheduled to take up regulatory proposals next week.