Apr 102015
 

Faced with opposition from Prop. 215 patients, the Fresno City Council voted down a cannabis cultivation ordinance to allow limited indoor growing.

Thursday’s 4-3 vote represented an about-face from the March 26 hearing, where the council voted 5-2 to approve the ordinance. The measure would have allowed patients to grow up to four plants indoors after securing a “special permit” from the city. Under Fresno Ordinance 2014-20, all growing is prohibited.

While Fresno Cannabis Association members and other speakers praised the council for being open to changes, they also warned the proposed ordinance had several problems and needed more work. Among their concerns: The requirement for a city-issued “special permit,” the ban on greenhouse growing using natural sunlight, the lack of environmental review, and the $1,000/plant fines for violations.

Medical cannabis patients were not the only ones concerned. Fresno County Supervisor Andreas Borgeas mentioned the city ordinance at Tuesday’s board meeting.

“I’ve been in contact with the council president of the City of Fresno, and some of you may have heard that the City of Fresno passed the first reading of a marijuana ordinance. I just wanted to put out there that I’m hoping to engage the city to see if there’s any compatibility that can be discussed between the county and the city,” Borgeas said.

The “compatibility” issue arises because both the City and the County of Fresno have total bans on cannabis cultivation in place; the city’s action would have left the county with the only growing ban. Borgeas didn’t describe what sort of engagement he was proposing, but he asked to meet with County Counsel Dan Cederborg.

Board Chair Debbie Poochigian suggested supervisors contact city officials ‐ with attorney in tow.

“Is there any interest in a couple of us going over and talking to the city to see if we can get them to maybe incorporate our marijuana ordinance? I mean, it’s none of our business; it’s not our jurisdiction. But at least to ask them to put it off,” she said.

“Would you guys be OK if we took a lawyer with us?” Poochigian asked her colleagues a moment later. “Whoever’s going to go will take a lawyer with them, either one or two of us, we haven’t decided yet.”

It was unclear from Poochigian’s comments whether she was aware the city had already banned medical cannabis cultivation. Fresno County banned all cannabis gardens in January 2014; the City Council followed suit two months later at the urging of Borgeas and police Chief Jerry Dyer. Both ordinances feature $1,000/plant fines. You can view the brief board discussion on the county website.

District Council Member March 26 April 9
1 Esmeralda Soria Yes Yes
2 Steve Brandau No No
3 Oliver L. Baines III Yes Yes
4 Paul Caprioglio Yes No
5 Sal Quintero No No
6 Lee Brand Yes No
7 Clint Olivier Yes Yes

KVPR radio: Fresno City Council changes mind on medical marijuana growing

Fresno Bee: Fresno City Council says no to grant for farmland planning

Fresno City Council video (view on website)

  4 Responses to “Fresno City Council balks at cannabis ordinance”

  1. THEY NEED TO PUT A BAN ON GANG BANGERS, SIT BACK AND WATCH ALL THE MMJ INVOLVED CRIMES GO AWAY. PROBLEM SOLVED…. ITS A GANG PROBLEM DISGUISE AS A MEDICAL MARIJUNA PROBLEM. SHERIFF MARGRET MIMS WILL NEVER ADMIT TO THIS. LEGALIZATION IS NOT ONLY TAKING MONEY AWAY FROM CARTELS BUT MOST IMPORTANTLY ITS TAKING MONEY AWAY FROM LOW LIFE GANG BANGERS IN OUR CITIES. THEY ARE REASON ALL THIS BANS ARE IN PLACE.

  2. I think four is ok you can not make money plus it should be enough the problem is letting those people grow for everyone else that have cards then you see back yards full, it should only be one card one house only four you can not grow for no one else and clones cost around $10.00 so the city should take taxes off that $10.00 for each plant so every person that have 4 plants should pay taxes on each plant its medicine. Let the city know about my coment

  3. Enough of the backwards thinking. The US gov has a patent for marijuana used as medicine. filed back in 1999 or so. Enough is enough. We need to stop the demonizing of consumption…and the attitude of I’m better than you. You must educate yourself. The Drug War is a crime. Our government has been undermining our people our nation for too long now…its time to build our nation build our people. End the Lies about cannabis…. putting people in jail over marijuana has got to stop now. Marijuana needs to be legal across the board for recreational and medical use. Just because Marijuana becomes legal doesn’t mean you have to use it. Fear propaganda has too stop. Have you read the side effects of those over the counter drugs you have in your cabinet. Have you seen the drug commercials and listened to all the horrible side effects they try to speed through. We need truth. We need to build our nation. restore freedom and liberty we need to stop militarizing our local law enforcement we need to build our communities citizens families and local pd….Disregarding facts,history of evidence, reports and studies, the fact the federal government has been providing marijuana to 10 or so patients since the late 1970’s. The fact the marijuana is providing cures for those that are ill and those who consume marijuana recreational don’t pose a threat but actually become kind and hungry. Our nation has no excuse no longer can we claim ignorance..or spout nonsense from the marijuana madness propaganda movie. It is time to undo the destroying of our nation and legalize marijuana nation wide across the board…its time to build our nation our people our families our children. time to be truthful.

  4. I love this it makes one step closer to make nature legal

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