Supervisor Gore – Recuse Yourself
The tentacles of the cannabis lobby reach deep to Sonoma County decision makers
Dear County Counsel Robert Pittman:
It has come to my attention that the sister-in-law of Supervisor James Gore, Erin Gore, is an active lobbyist on behalf of the cannabis industry. My Public Records Act requests have shown that she has been frequently in contact with county officials who decide cannabis policy, and that she seems to be a cannabis grower.
The Board of Supervisors will soon be considering extensive changes to the cannabis ordinance that will benefit growers at the expense of neighborhoods and neighborhood comparability.
Mr. Gore has been a member of the Cannabis Ad Hoc Committee for several years, which meets in secret. No agendas are publicized, and the public cannot attend those meetings. We have no idea the extent to which Supervisor Gore’s sister-in-law lobbies him directly, either in secret ad hoc meetings or during family get togethers. We have no idea the extent to which Supervisor Gore may have a financial interest in the family business of his brother and sister-in-law.
Under the circumstances, it seems that Supervisor Gore should recuse himself from further participation in the Cannabis Ad Hoc Committee, and should neither participate in any board of supervisor discussions on cannabis issues or vote on changes to the cannabis ordnance or general plan revisions that affect cannabis.
This seems to be a serious conflict of interest. In any event this situation is unseemly, and creates an impression to the public of a rigged county government in favor of the cannabis industry.
I look forward to the county’s prompt resolution of this matter.