While several municipalities in California have enacted temporary bans on recreational marijuana and others have yet to decide the fate of the state’s newly legalized industry, America’s Finest City has just become the first city in San Diego County to approve recreational marijuana sales, as reported by The San Diego Union-Tribune.
On Jan. 31, 2017, the San Diego City Council voted to approve recreational marijuana sales within city limits, pending the state’s specific regulations for retail sales. Once the state unveils its regulations, San Diego’s 15 medical marijuana dispensaries will get the green light to sell recreational marijuana.
The council also decided to revisit the issue of whether to approve and zone cultivation, manufacturing and testing facilities within nine months.
“I believe it is our responsibility to implement the will of the voters,” said councilwoman Barbara Bry. “It’s also our duty to wisely and responsibly regulate every part of the supply chain in order to ensure that our consumers have a safe and vetted product.”
Before voting, the San Diego City Council heard from several individuals during the meeting’s public comment period in regards to sales, cultivation, manufacturing and testing.
“It’s crucial to the health and safety of the citizens of San Diego that the council does not ban cannabis health and safety analytic testing laboratories that test for harmful contaminations like pesticides, residual solvents and microbiological toxins,” said Greg Magdoff, co-owner of PharmLabs in Ocean Beach, during the meeting.
“I know you’re not going to ban it, but please make regulations as strict as possible. I mean we all know this is a real tough world we’re living in now; we don’t need marijuana,” said Nancy Logan.
According to Ann Hollenbaugh, a sample intake specialist at PharmLabs, “The green rush shows projections for the city of San Diego to make over $600 million in tax revenues from a fully functional and regulated cannabis market.”