Wednesday, January 27 the Board of Supervisors voted 4-1 (with Supervisor Jim Desmond voting no) to legalize the sale, distribution, and growing of marijuana for recreational and medicinal purposes. And to put persons with pot-related arrests and convictions at the top of the list.
Desmond issued this statement after the vote: “Today, the County Board of Supervisors voted to give people previously arrested or convicted of drug crimes greater opportunities and reduced barriers to own and operate cannabis dispensaries. That’s crazy and bad for the safety of our communities. Encouraging convicted drug criminals to come to San Diego and sell marijuana is a terrible idea. To support such a proposal is to deliberately inflict harm on the unincorporated communities. When behavioral health crises are at an all-time high and homelessness is a major issue, it is a terrible time to make more drugs more available.”
Desmond said previously that the ordinance “will have major ramifications for the entire unincorporated area. I’ve always believed that I wouldn’t want a marijuana dispensary down the street from my house, so I’m not going put it next to someone’s else’s house. If the item were to pass in San Diego County, it would allow for dispensaries to be built near homes, churches, and just about any other facility. There must be some parameters to protect our families.”
The ordinance was sponsored by Supervisors Fletcher and Vargas and would allow marijuana dispensaries and cultivation. Currently, marijuana dispensaries and cultivation are prohibited within the unincorporated County.
The proposal would allow cannabis sales in any commercially zoned property in the unincorporated area, with very few limitations. According to Desmond, it would provide preference of operating licenses in the unincorporated area to people that have been either arrested and/or convicted of cannabis crimes. “This is an absolute assault on the