ADVANCING HEALTHY COMMUNITIES: LEMON GROVE HANDLES CANNABIS LAW RESPONSIBLYBy David R. Shorey, East County Program Supervisor, Institute for Public Methods

January 10,  2023 (Lemon Grove) — For the reason that passage of Proposition 64 legalizing hashish for leisure use, cities and counties throughout California have been trying to satisfy the needs of the citizens whereas additionally balancing public well being and security. Native Management, the power for cities and counties to manage whether or not or how hashish operations exist of their jurisdictions, was included within the authentic proposition. It typically brings the battle for or in opposition to hashish to metropolis corridor steps.

Lemon Grove is not any totally different. After Proposition 64, residents of Lemon Grove turned to the initiative course of in 2016 to permit the sale of medical marijuana. The measure handed. But it surely wasn’t till 2021 that the Metropolis Council adopted an ordinance relating to leisure hashish. The legislation handed in June of that 12 months creates a regulatory framework by which hashish will be offered for leisure use in Lemon Grove. Residents at the moment are seeing how the adoption of that ordinance is impacting their group.

Two hashish retailers are working in Lemon Grove, one other is about to open this 12 months, and two extra are going by way of the approval course of for a complete of 5 storefronts. Metropolis officers say up to now, so good with regards to these companies staying in compliance with the municipal code. Let’s hope it stays that method as extra of those shops open and function within the metropolis. Town’s Code Enforcement and the San Diego County Sheriff’s Division are tasked with ensuring these companies behave and function throughout the legislation. Simply because state legislation says leisure hashish is allowed for retail gross sales, cultivation, manufacturing, distribution and testing in sure zones, that doesn’t imply it must be allowed anyplace and in all places.

The Lemon Grove hashish legislation does have distance necessities. The companies that promote it have to be one thousand ft from public parks, playgrounds, licensed daycare amenities, faculties, and alcohol and substance abuse remedy facilities. These are thought of protected makes use of. Measurement is between the closest property traces of the premises during which the regulated makes use of and protected makes use of are situated.

“The measurement of the space between makes use of will consider pure topographical limitations and constructed limitations corresponding to freeways or flood management channels that will impede direct bodily entry between the makes use of,” the Lemon Grove Municipal Code reads. “In such instances, the separation distance shall be measured as essentially the most direct route across the barrier in a way that establishes direct entry.”

Whereas we’re at it, the legislation additionally prohibits the sale of alcoholic drinks, tobacco, tobacco merchandise, and drug paraphernalia at hashish shops. A Conditional Use Allow legitimate for 3 years is issued earlier than a hashish enterprise can open in Lemon Grove. Then it should cross a compliance examine earlier than being renewed. A uniformed safety guard is required to stay on the premises whereas the shop is open and every location should additionally designate a Neighborhood Relations Liaison to handle group complaints or operational issues. The added bonus within the legislation requires the liaison to offer their title, telephone quantity and e mail tackle to the Lemon Grove Metropolis Supervisor, Sheriff’s Division personnel supervising legislation enforcement in Lemon Grove and neighbors inside 100 ft of the dispensary.

“We implement a number of legal guidelines. This was put into place by the folks,” Lemon Grove Metropolis Supervisor Lydia Romero mentioned. “There haven’t been any points on the companies working in our metropolis.”

Possibly not exactly on the companies, however issues do current on our roads, our authorized system, our well being methods, our substance misuse remedy methods, and our social outcomes corresponding to training {and professional} achievement. The proliferation of hashish retailers, whether or not leisure or medical, has the potential to severely impression the well being and security of communities and youth specifically.

Hashish is dangerous for younger folks as a result of it will probably intrude with mind growth and has been proven to trigger long-term deficits in cognitive perform deficits when use begins in adolescence. Complete regulation is an important technique for county and municipal leaders to the forestall unfavourable impacts of hashish on youth.

There’s a lot to think about now that hashish is being woven into the material of our society. We now have to remain alert, become involved in our communities and guarantee our greatest pursuits are being met by our elected officers and group leaders. IPS can be working with Lemon Grove residents to observe hashish operations in Lemon Grove to make sure they’re in full compliance with metropolis and state necessities. This may embody website assessments for current hashish operations and impression evaluation for brand spanking new operations. IPS can even be working with different group organizations to boost consciousness in regards to the impression that hashish has on communities. This may embody details about conflicts with prescription medicines, impacts on a person’s mind earlier than totally developed at age 25, impacts of excessive THC ranges on psychological well being, and the way pediatric (beneath age 6) hashish poisonings have skyrocketed.

Hashish is authorized in California and cities like Lemon Grove are working to make sure that the unfavourable impacts of hashish do not outweigh any optimistic impacts.

IPS works alongside communities to construct energy, problem methods of inequity, defend well being and enhance high quality of life. IPS has a imaginative and prescient for secure, safe, vibrant and wholesome communities the place everybody can thrive. To seek out out extra about IPS East County, observe us on our social media platforms: IPS East County Fb, IPS East County Twitter, and East County Youth Coalition Instagram. Our web site is at