The Tri County Sentry reports

Oxnard— The Oxnard City Council, took a step forward in the cannabis market during its June 4, meeting, and unanimously approved the manufacturing, testing, and distribution within the city limits.

The item brought some debate, as council members asked City Manager Alex Nguyen to step on the gas and bring back an ordinance that allows businesses to open retail marijuana dispensaries in Oxnard, which would help the city’s budget crisis through additional tax revenue.

The council also approved a resolution approving the live scan procedure to adopt an Originating Agency Identification (ORI) number to permit the city to obtain both state and federal (FBI) criminal histories for the regulation of cannabis applicants.

Planning & Environmental Services Manager Kathleen Mallory made the presentation to the council and said in Jan. and Apr. 2018, the council banned cannabis use and allowed the delivery of medical cannabis in the city limits.

“In June 2018, the council approved a ballot measure that put the cannabis business tax on the ballot, and that was approved,” she said. “In June 2018, the council conducted a robust study session that evaluated different cannabis uses, and the city came up with strategies on how to address them.

“Later in June, we presented a fiscal impact analysis with HdL with a medical and non-medical physical analysis of what the city can support,” she said.

The Planning Commission heard the ordinance on April 4, 2019, and approved the item 5-0, with two members absent.

The council directed the ordinance to use the state’s buffer of 600 feet for cannabis businesses, she said, and take a go-slow approach, which looks at how many types of cannabis businesses can be located within the city.

“The study that HdL provided to the city indicated there are vastly more businesses types that can be accommodated in the city than the go-slow approach would recommend,” she said.

“We’re taking the council’s recommendation to go forward with the manufacturing testing and distribution tonight. We’re looking at eight manufacturing facilities, three distributors and one testing lab.”

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“To avoid conflicts of interest, our owners/operators are prohibited by law from holding any other type of ownership interest in any other type of licensed commercial cannabis activity, so it’s firewalled off so there wouldn’t be any appearance of a conflict of interest. “They must be licensed by the state and must maintain an ISO ESC accreditation for testing labs that speaks to the proper calibration of the equipment they use regularly. The labs are required to destroy testing batches that yield non-compliant samples.”