Pot Club Debate Nears End

Pot Club Debate Nears End
Posted by CN Staff on October 21, 2005 at 11:53:17 PT
By Jo Stanley, Staff Writer
Source: San Francisco Examiner
San Francisco, CA -- After weeks of legislative lurches and delays, The City’s medical pot club policy is finally coming into clearer focus this week as supervisors update the fee structure one more time and a just-released map outlines where clubs would be permitted under the latest proposals.That means the full board should have all the pieces of the much-amended package before them on Tuesday, when they could vote to end the current moratorium on new clubs and become the first city in the state to impose health and planning regulations without limiting the number of clubs outright.
Patients with their doctors’ permission are eligible as customers for the marijuana under state Proposition 215 that voters approved nine years ago. But under the latest version of Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi’s proposal, planners have said 14 or so out of the current 35 clubs may have to close or relocate because of limits keeping them away from schools, residences or industrial areas.The Planning Department’s revised map shows the remaining area most open to the clubs would be around Market Street downtown, with scattered spots along Mission and Lombard streets as well as spots in the Sunset and Richmond districts, among others. All applications for either existing or new clubs would trigger neighborhood notification and public hearings, including the option to appeal a permit to the Board of Appeals.One more question mark, however, may be Supervisor Chris Daly’s openness to the new zoning regulations, which he tried unsuccessfully to block altogether so that health standards would be maintained without forcing clubs to move from their current locations. Noting that his South of Market area already has the greatest preponderance of pot clubs, he said he doesn’t want to see a neighborhood uprising if more and more of the dispensaries try to locate there.“We’re willing to take a disproportionate number of clubs,” he explained, “but we’re not willing to take all of them.”The proposed fees now stand at $6,691 for the initial permit, raised $581 to cover newly mandated hearings and review costs, and $3,100 for an annual license. Both would be adjusted each year as the Consumer Price Index rises, under the Budget and Finance Committee’s recommendation on Thursday.If the board does adopt new regulations next week, they would still require a second vote and the signature of Mayor Gavin Newsom. Most of his suggestions have already been incorporated, however.Source: San Francisco Examiner (CA)Author: Jo Stanley, Staff WriterPublished: Thursday, October 20, 2005Copyright: 2005 San Francisco ExaminerContact: letters sfexaminer.comWebsite: Related Articles:Vote on Pot Clubs Postponed Club Debate Vigorous in S.F. Medical Marijuana Is Misused
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Comment #5 posted by FoM on October 24, 2005 at 09:17:48 PT
Related Article from Bay City News
Formal Regulations Coming For S.F. Pot ClubsOctober 24, 2005(Bay City News) San Francisco  -- After six months in the making, San Francisco supervisors on Tuesday are expected to pass the city's first set of medical marijuana regulations.Pot clubs began to bud in San Francisco after California voters passed Prop. 215 in 1996 allowing patients with permission from a doctor to purchase medical marijuana. At one point there were more than 40 pot clubs in the city.The city is nearing the end of a six-month moratorium on the opening of any new pot clubs, while officials draft and adopt new regulations.Four supervisors have expressed serious concerns with the legislation, proposed by Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi, arguing that it will force the closure of some clubs and the relocation of others. Other concerns raised at the meeting included a lack of a cap on the total number of pot clubs and the total number of plants patients are allowed to grow in their own homes."The legislation is broken," said Supervisor Chris Daly after the board voted last week to continue discussion of the legislation at this Tuesday's meeting.Daly gained approval for an amendment to the legislation last Tuesday to exclude certain neighborhoods in his district's South of Market region as eligible sites for pot clubs.In a separate amendment, Daly failed to gain support to exclude the Planning Department's role in the legislation altogether, which he said unfairly targeted his and Supervisor Sophie Maxwell's districts for the highest number of pot clubs.Maxwell also gained support to exclude industrial areas in her district. Although Maxwell still had certain issues to resolve with the current legislation, her aide said last week she was getting closer to being able to support the ordinance.City planner Dan Sider said that Daly's amendment is expected to close three clubs in the SoMa area, but Maxwell's would have no immediate affect since the two clubs in the city's southeastern industrial districts are no longer in operation.According to Sider, the legislation would only shut down a total of five clubs, including the three in Daly's district.Sider said the legislation prohibits clubs in residential areas and within 500 feet of schools or 1,000 feet if there is smoking on the premises. Clubs are also prohibited, according to Sider, on the same parcel as substance abuse treatment programs and now - thanks to Daly and Maxwell's amendments - in portions of SoMa and city's southeastern portion.Less clear is where clubs will be allowed, said Sider. Certain commercial districts are fair game and he said he expects supervisors to refer to a revised map on Tuesday to see exactly what areas are available.Supervisor Sean Elsbernd, who voted against Mirkarimi's legislation in committee, narrowly failed to amend the ordinance to cap the number of clubs after a six-month registration period and supported other amendments to further limit the legislation. The legislation now allows clubs an 18-month window to register with the city.Supervisor Michela Alioto-Pier, who gained support for forcing all clubs to be wheelchair accessible, expressed concerns with the 99 plants that the legislation allows patients to grow in their homes.Alioto-Pier's aide, Rob Black, said last week that the she didn't understand why patients, caregivers, and pot clubs themselves were all permitted to grow the same number of plants. Black said the number might have originated from the fact that possessing 100 plants is considered a felony. Alioto-Pier would be able to support the legislation, said Black, if this confusion is cleared up and supervisors ensure the fees are high enough to fund the current review process.As the legislation currently stands, all clubs would be required to obtain a permit with the Department of Public Health and submit to a hearing by the Planning Department, whose decision could be appealed to the city's Board of Appeals.Also, at the urging of Mayor Gavin Newsom, customers of pot clubs would be able to carry up to a half of pound of marijuana a day, down from the original pound proposed by Mirkarimi.Each club would pay $6,691 for the initial permit and $3,100 for an annual license, which would be adjusted in correlation to the Consumer Price Index.In other news, supervisors will consider an ordinance to allow for a payroll expense tax exclusion for qualified clean energy technology businesses. Crafted by Supervisor Jake McGoldrick, the bill has faced opposition from Supervisor Chris Daly who characterized it as a "tax loophole" and said it was not the best way to attract this type of business 
to the city. The bill, however, is currently sponsored by five supervisors and would only need one more vote to pass on first reading.Supervisors will also hear comments from the public on the controversial Home Depot project set to be built at 491 Bayshore Blvd.The meeting is schedule for 2 p.m. in the legislative chambers at City Hall.Copyright: 2005 Bay City News
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Comment #4 posted by potpal on October 21, 2005 at 17:36:24 PT
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Comment #3 posted by Dr Ganj on October 21, 2005 at 16:20:40 PT
Check this link here:
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Comment #2 posted by FoM on October 21, 2005 at 14:37:57 PT
EJ I'm Not Sure
If the shop that was in Weeds is a real shop I'd want to see that one. I assume it was in San Francisco.
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Comment #1 posted by E_Johnson on October 21, 2005 at 14:12:58 PT
What's a good cannabis club in downtown SF?
I'm going to SF for the opera this weekend with some friends, can anyone recommend a good cannabis club around the Montogomery or Civic Center BART stations? I don't think I can take my medicine on the plane. Or can I?I used go to the original one on Market long long ago but I don't suppose that's around any more is it?
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