From the Field: An SOSN core member says goodbye to Sonoma County
One of our founders, who lives a rural part of the North County, has given up hope and is selling his property – most likely at a great loss – due to the incursion of 2 large commercial pot grows next door.
“You’ll have to excuse my tone and directness, the past 7 months have been especially difficult for my wife and I as we see our world slipping away. To that end, my wife and I have just recently decided to sell our home and move out of Sonoma County. We say “sell” but the fact is that with two large cannabis projects pending right next door, one in application and another soon to be, our property is essentially worthless. Who in their right mind would live next to this? Never mind the impacts to our well and the very reason we moved here, the absolute beauty of the natural environment that will be forever soiled by commerce. Our property is even too small, too wooded and too steep for cannabis, the required setbacks take away the only flat ground. Do you know what it is like to lose everything you have worked your entire life for? My wife is devasted, it pains me to no end to look into her eyes and see the lost hope. I wake each day wondering how we will make up for the possible loss of our retirement, the loss of the dream that everything went into. Just how much more must we lose, how much more of the very fabric of life on earth must be sold in the name of commerce? How far do we go in sacrificing the quality of life that people originally moved here for, raised a family for? Some things simply do not have a dollar value, they are as priceless as the air we breathe. And yet they are still sold out.
At this stage, I have no desire to continue this discussion, it is pointless. You have the County’s ear, I am easily dismissed as irrelevant. So much of my recent time has been spent on researching cannabis, I no longer have the desire to waste another moment of my life discussing it. Like many other communities, it has completely taken over our lives, not a minute goes by that we don’t end up talking about “what’s
going to happen to us”. Just to be clear, we are not against cannabis, just the land rush associated with it. It is safe to say that if Prop 64 came up for a vote today, it would fail to pass, residents and growers alike would vote “No”. Not on the basis that anyone thinks cannabis is bad or should not be legalized, but on the consequences that an ill-conceived and open-ended ballot measure would cause and its failure to protect all involved.
We simply want our life back.”