Supervisors clear the way for Glen Ellen cannabis dispensary – Sonoma Index-Tribune


Soon, there will be not one but two cannabis dispensaries in the Sonoma Valley – and at least two more waiting for the green light from the county. Set to join Sonoma’s Sparc dispensary, poised to open around the end of the year, will be a dispensary in a decommissioned firehouse in southern Glen Ellen, to be named the Loe Firehouse Dispensary.

John and Samantha Loe (formerly John Lobro and Samantha Smith) prevailed at the Sept. 14 Board of Supervisors meeting against the appeal to their planned 1,891-square-foot cannabis dispensary at 15499 Arnold Drive, at the intersection with Madrone Road. Their application for the retail cannabis shop was filed four years ago and approved by the county’s Board of Zoning Adjustments (BZA) in April, but was immediately hit with an appeal from a nonprofit neighborhood association called Protect Our Sonoma Valley Family Neighborhood.

The appeal to the BZA ruling was heard by the full Board of Supervisors, working from a staff report prepared by Permit Sonoma’s Crystal Acker. Her summary went through the appeal point by point, finding reasons to rebut each concern – on issues such as consistency with county code on parking spaces, property setbacks, hearing notices, traffic analysis and public outreach.

At the same time, the staff report would not allow the applicants – the Loes – to eliminate some conditions of approval imposed by the BZA ruling, specifically those requiring sidewalk and public frontage upgrades to comply with Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) standards.

Acker’s report found many of the reasons for appeal were invalid – for instance, the concern that other dispensaries made the Firehouse redundant is not true at this point in time, the anticipated traffic conditions from the Sonoma Developmental Center are unknown for the future, nor do the same setbacks appropriate to

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