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Council to Decide Tonight on Future of Pot Club Moratorium

The City Council will also hear a report about the settlements the city reached with San Francisco Baykeeper and the San Francisco Bay Regional Water Quality Control Board.

The city’s moratorium on pot clubs is set to expire on Sept. 25, but depending on what happens at , the city could decide to either keep things the same or move forward with a plan to allow medicinal marijuana to be sold within San Bruno’s boundaries.

If reports from the city attorney and police chief are any indication, it seems as if the council is leaning toward keeping things the same and not allowing any pot clubs to be established any time soon.

In a memo to the council, City Attorney Marc Zafferano suggests several options for how the city should move forward—two of which support a ban on pot clubs and establishing a new moratorium.

He cites the fact that a number of cities throughout San Mateo County have adopted a ban or moratorium on pot clubs and that the state’s court system still hasn’t been able to clearly define what exactly is a medical marijuana dispensary.

“As a result, the legal landscape is still uncertain in this area, although the general consensus is that cities are not required by state law to allow medical marijuana establishments, however labeled, in any zoning district,” Zafferano said in the memo.

Zafferano also cites a memo from Police Chief Neil Telford, who is in favor of extending the city’s moratorium because of the negative side effects and possible impact on the Police Department as a result of having to respond to criminal activity involving marijuana.

“Should medicinal marijuana collectives be allowed to operate in San Bruno, it will likely have a negative impact to the surrounding neighborhood and will increase the demand for police services,” Telford said in a memo.

Already, police have seen the impact this year, Telford added, when officers responded to a residential burglary in April on Valleywood Drive and discovered that out of the home.

At tonight’s meeting, the council will also receive a report about the settlements reached between the city and both San Francisco Baykeeper and the San Francisco Bay Regional Water Quality Control Board.

Both Baykeeper and the regional water quality board sued the city over its sewer system for polluting the Bay, and now the city will be required to pay out $8.7 million for the settlement agreements.

Bill Baker July 27, 2011 at 12:30 AM
Telford's opposing medical marijuana dispensaries in San Bruno? If I'm not mistaken, SBPD Chief Telford, who has been San Bruno's Police Chief in San Bruno since 12/18/2006, has been and is charge of enacting and enforcing rules and regulations for gambling clubs in San Bruno. Earlier this year, Artichoke Joe's (AJ's) in San Bruno was raided by the FBI because gangsters and their criminal enterprise were using AJ's a base for loansharking as well as the trafficking of illegal narcotics for approximately 3 years. Now, Telford says that a medical marijuana dispensary in SB will have negative side effects & possible impact on the SBPD as a result of having to respond to criminal activity involving marijuana. Is Telford worried that the medical marijuana dispensary might attract the wrong type of people? Such as sick people who actually need medical marijuana as opposed to the clientele of the drug manufacturers and distributors who operated out of Artichoke Joe's 3 story building for 3 years a few blocks from Telford's Police station? Perhaps Mr. Telford should be asked whether he was asleep at the wheel during the 3 years AJ's was being used as a loansharking, drug trafficking operation or, for whatever reason, simply ignored that situation and allowed it to continue? Are certain folks opposing a medical marijuana dispensary from moving into San Bruno because they don't want any new competition moving into town?
Martin Ricard (Editor) July 27, 2011 at 12:42 AM
Bill, you make a good point here.
Heidi Beck July 27, 2011 at 04:27 AM
Unfortunately it's not the sick people who are the ones hanging around the dispensaries.

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