Lemon Grove Overturns City Staff Denial

On Tuesday, September 19, Lemon Grove City Council overturned the-the city staff’s denial of an application for a medical marijuana dispensary located at 6915 North Ave, Lemon Grove CA 91945. The 4-0 decision came after a lengthy appeal process.

During the initial approval stage, council staff became aware that the proposed dispensary was sitting within 1,000 feet of three alleged daycare centers and subsequently denied the application. This was in spite of the fact that direct access from the in-home daycare locations was impeded by a series of barriers, both natural and human-made.

The applicant, Christopher Williams gave a passionate argument about a six-foot barbed wire fence that stretches for 2,000 feet, separating a residential area from an industrial one. Councilman Jerry Jones started off the conversation pondering the word “barrier” and what it means. As defined in Lemon Grove’s Measure V, Jones questioned what would be considered a barrier when measuring distance by the path of travel instead of “as the crow flies.”

The Lemon Grove City Council concluded they would rather consider the slope at the back of the city property and the on ramp/off ramp of the 94 freeway as a combined barrier that would make them more comfortable approving zoning clearance for the Conditional Use Permit.

The decision makes this the third medical marijuana dispensary to be given the green light to pass through the zoning process. It seems that city council is going to be extremely reluctant to approve any additional locations at this time. The Association of Cannabis Professionals would like to see more dispensaries opened in Lemon Grove. They are actively collecting signatures for a new initiative. The city council will then need to decide between holding a special election to the tune of $300,000 or adopting the new definitions which would make a special election completely unnecessary.

Chris Williams is a founder of Candid Chronicle.