Medical marijuana locations to be discussed

Stirring the pot today, Carson City’s Planning Commission will hold a public hearing about possible locations for medical marijuana establishments in the city.

The commission, which meets 5 p.m. in the Community Center’s Sierra Room, 851 E. William St., will hold the hearing and is expected to take action on recommending ordinance language to the city’s Board of Supervisors.

Community development and planning staff were directed earlier by the board to draft the ordinance, get the commission’s input, and return it to the five-member governing board for consideration.

The ordinance deals with zoning, use districts, development standards, land use and site designs, as well as local regulations governing medical marijuana dispensaries, cultivation locations, testing laboratories and production facilities for edible medical marijuana products.

Community Development Director Lee Plemel said state law calls for two dispensaries in Carson City, if city government opts into the program authorized by Senate Bill 374 of 2013. The dispensaries, under the local draft ordinance, could go into general commercial or general industrial zoning areas. Those basically are on East William Street or on South Carson Street south of the downtown. Cultivation facilities where marijuana is grown, testing labs and production spots for edibles wouldn’t be allowed in commercial areas, but in the industrial locales.

“Those are places where the public (generally) does not go,” Plemel said.

He also said though the local jurisdiction has oversight on special use permits, zoning and some other regulatory matters, much regulatory power stays with the state and regulations it has adopted. For example, establishments can’t be within 1,000 feet of a school or within 300 feet of churches, parks, playgrounds, day care facilities or recreation centers.

Notification of the local public hearing went to property owners who may be affected. The notices also let them know the Board of Supervisors is scheduled to consider this draft ordinance at its regular meeting on June 19 in the Sierra Room at the Community Center. Regular board meetings begin at 8:30 a.m. and may last much of the day.

Ordinances require a board hearing, first reading action and final adoption two weeks later before taking effect.


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