Not quite hopping on the bandwagon, the City of Corcoran is taking a measured approach when it comes to allowing legalized cannabis businesses. The city is also moving forward on a policy process to cover the personal cultivation of recreational marijuana within its boundaries.
No date has yet been set, but the city council agreed to a workshop to discuss commercial cannabis business activities. The workshop will be facilitated by HdL companies, which has established a specialized consulting service and has worked or is currently working with other cities in the Central Valley and throughout the state. According to City Manager Dr. Kindon Meik, staff recommended using the company at the workshop to cite the potential benefits and/or detriments associated with the various cannabis business activities. Those range from cultivation and manufacturing to production, processing and distribution. The company also provides information on regulatory measures, taxation, training and related topics to assist the city council should it choose to pursue further action. The council has already signaled its willingness to possibly move forward on the issue, but only on the commercial growth side. The council has not favored the location of dispensaries in Corcoran. Getting HdL to the workshop is expected to cost about $2,000. In a related action, the council approved the staff moving forward to generate a local ordinance covering the personal cultivation of recreational marijuana. The issue was approved by voters in the November, 2016, election. As adopted, the law allows for the cultivation of up to six plants per household. As noted in an article that appeared in Western Cities, examples of reasonable regulations may include: –Enacting a requirement for residential cultivation permit, with an appropriate fee; –Requiring as a condition of the permit that the permit holder agrees to periodic inspection (under appropriate notice) to ensure that cultivation does not exceed the six-plant limit, draw more electrical power from the grid than the building is designed to carry (carrying a fire hazard, present a health risk (such as mold accumulation), or use more water than is reasonably required to cultivate six plants. Last fall, the city adopted an ordinance that put in place a temporary moratorium on the cultivation of marijuana for personal use. That is still an option under the law approved in November. The other option is to “reasonably regulate” the growth, possession and use of marijuana plants allowed by Proposition 64.