The Sonoma County Board of Supervisors approved a commercial cannabis ordinance that has negatively impacted the lives of many rural residents.
In 2016, the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors approved a commercial cannabis ordinance that did not adequately assess the potential negative impacts to rural residents. Some of the negative impacts include pungent skunk odor and increased noise and traffic due to commercial cannabis businesses in neighborhoods, adjacent to homes. Many of these businesses are on rural, one-lane roads and in high fire prone areas. They are also allowed to operate in parts of Sonoma County where water is scarce.
It’s legal today to grow cannabis on a 10-acre DA, LIA, or RRD-zoned parcel surrounded by homes, permitting the outdoor plants are 300 feet from a neighboring house. Your veggie garden could be just 100 feet away from those outdoor plants, for example; and your kitchen could be just 10 feet from indoor cultivation structures, parking lots, and employee activities — per today’s current ordinance.
Save our Sonoma Neighborhoods is a neighborhood advocacy group determined to preserve the unique rural character and quality of life of Sonoma County and protect the property rights of its rural residents. We are working with Sonoma County staff and the Board of Supervisors to ensure cannabis cultivation does not adversely impact neighborhoods.
The Sonoma County Cannabis Ordinance is currently undergoing revisions to address neighborhood compatibility thanks to the letters and phone calls from our members.
The Board of Supervisors have asked Staff to revise the current cannabis ordinance to finally address neighborhood compatibility. Our members, many of whom have been adversely affected by the failure of the current ordinance, have been advocating for improvements to the ordinance.
We need to ensure that our recommendations to protect rural homeowners from commercial cannabis grows in our neighborhoods become part of Phase 2 of the ordinance amendments. We are asking for increased setbacks to property line, protecting our watersheds, prohibiting DA zoned parcels adjacent to RR and AR zoned parcels as well as in high fire risk areas and on narrow, one lane or dead end roads – are adopted by the Board of Supervisors.
Most Bay Area cities and counties have banned commercial cannabis cultivation.
The safety of rural residents is a major concern due to the increase in violent crime associated with cannabis businesses.
Manhunt on for 2 suspects in cannabis-related Santa Rosa home invasion robbery. A manhunt is underway for at least two armed men who barged into a home on the southwestern outskirts of Santa Rosa Wednesday morning, tied up a male resident and made off with an unknown amount of cannabis. Just before 9:30 a.m., one…
In response to this cannabis-related crime, Supervisor David Rabbitt, at a board meeting in April 2018 stated, “I think a lot of the angst comes about the violence, which you can’t over, um, you just can’t pass off. It’s only going to be a matter of time before that same violence occurs on a permitted site. In my opinion, the only reason it hasn’t yet is because you have such a small amount of permitted sites. Friends from back East kicked in 3 neighbors’ door and, uh, pistol whipped someone. That’s scary. And there were enough houses around that particular neighborhood that you could not tell who owned what piece of parcel on the fence lines and everything else. I think what we really need to do as a county is to push people away from the residences and have the grows out in larger, more open areas”.
“Witnesses in the first shooting described a terrifying scene. Five masked intruders kicked in the front door, setting off an alarm system at the modest home and jolting awake the entire household — a married couple and their three children, ages 9, 14 and 18. One of the masked suspects fired a gunshot into the ceiling and shoved the 18-year-old into a laundry room, tying her wrists together with duct tape. Then they started making demands.”