Update from Kate: Medical Marijuana Workshop

District 3 News Logo

Medical Marijuana Workshop Update with
Opportunities for Further Community Input and Dialogue

On June 9, the Marin County Board of Supervisors held a workshop to consider a proposed ordinance and regulatory framework to allow up to 3 medical marijuana dispensaries in Marin at appropriate locations. I heard many residents express both deep concern and earnest support for Marin County considering how it might provide safe, local access to medical marijuana. Many living here in Marin have conditions that are eased, and in some cases significantly relieved, by the use of safe, regulated medical marijuana. Marin does not at this time have any local dispensary to serve residents who need a safe and regulated product.

The Board of Supervisors sub-committee made up of Supervisors Judy Arnold and Damon Connolly brought forward a draft ordinance, regulations and maps showing where existing zoning in Marin might permit the location of medical marijuana dispensaries in north, central and southern Marin.

The June 9 workshop was scheduled to give community members a chance to share their opinions and concerns, both in writing in advance and at the workshop.

After hearing all of the comments and suggestions, I asked county staff to further examine the following:

  • consider increasing the buffer from 600 to 1,000 feet between this type of use and schools and youth-oriented facilities;
  • include pathways to schools in the definition of “youth-oriented facilities”;
  • proximity to residential homes;
  • option of regulating delivery services;
  • insurance requirements for these facilities;
  • testing of products and the implications of including that requirement in the licensing scheme;
  • financial auditing and reporting processes;
  • the meaning of the term “display” when the ordinance refers to storefront display;
  • organic vs. nonorganic product;
  • starting with a “pilot” by licensing only one location as a way to evaluate operational impacts; and
  • inappropriateness of including the proposed Strawberry sites based on proximity to residences, schools and heavily-used safe routes pathways to nearby schools.

If you want to know more, you may watch the entire Medical Marijuana Ordinance Workshop with the public comment and Board discussion of the issue. (Scroll down in the Board meeting agenda of June 9 to item #13 at 1:30 pm.)

This matter will be coming back to the Board of Supervisors for further examination and discussion. I hope you will stay informed. The County of Marin’s Community Development Agency has set up a website dedicated to this issue. You may want to “subscribe” to this page for updates and invitations to future meetings.

In addition, you can keep up to date about ongoing issues in District 3 and throughout the County by subscribing to Kate Sears’ news and information updates.