The Fresno City Council passed its new cannabis growing ban on Thursday, closely following the lead of Fresno County. Both ordinances feature heavy fines of $1,000 per plant, which county supervisors imposed for the first time Tuesday.
Council Member Clint Olivier cast the sole “no” vote, as he did at the first reading on March 20. The zoning law goes to Mayor Ashley Swearengin for her signature; actual enforcement against indoor gardens is not expected to begin until five months later. Collectives, dispensaries and outdoor cultivation were previously banned by Ordinance 2012-13.
As something of a consolation prize, the City Council also created an ad hoc committee to examine ways to allow “legitimate” patients to obtain cannabis. The committee members are Olivier, Oliver Baines and Blong Xiong, who’s running for county supervisor.
Fresno Bee coverage: Fresno council committee formed to review marijuana growing
KSEE 24 coverage:
The Fresno cannabis growing ban differs from the county’s in some respects. It doesn’t explicitly authorize criminal prosecution of a misdemeanor for violations. It also features a 120-day grace period, with enforcement against indoor marijuana gardens expected to begin in late August. Because outdoor growing was already prohibited in the city, Fresno police will continue to seize outdoor plants, but with the addition of the $1,000/plant fines beginning in about 30 days.