After months of pressure from community members, the San Geronimo Valley Planning Group is formally opposing a proposal for a medical marijuana dispensary in Forest Knolls, sending a comment letter to the county on the last possible day, Feb. 20. The letter argues that the proposal is inconsistent with the area’s community plan and opposed by the vast majority of the group’s members, though it cautiously supports delivery services in and outside the county.
Community members pushed the group at a packed meeting in November to denounce the application, and other valley groups, including the Lagunitas School District and the West Marin Coalition for Healthy Kids, have taken stances against it.
“The planning group took a bit of heat for not taking a position earlier in the process,” Dan McKenna, the group’s vice president, said at Tuesday’s monthly meeting. But Mr. McKenna said the organization wanted to undertake a thorough analysis of the issues and wait for the dispensary’s public presentation. That did not take place until Feb. 7, at an event that drew hundreds of locals who spoke out against the proposed dispensary, called Forest Knolls Wellness and sited at 6700 Francis Drake Blvd. (The dispensary argued that outspoken opponents have effectively silenced local supporters.)
In its letter to the county, the planning group cites concerns that ranged from traffic to children to the dispensary board’s lack of experience in the medical marijuana industry. The planning group is also concerned about effects on home values, it said at the meeting. Members also argued that the bus stop, in front of the building where the dispensary would be located, should be considered a youth-oriented facility, thereby making the location ineligible for a dispensary.
In a letter that Natalia Thurston, the dispensary’s lawyer, sent to the county this week, she said a