Acting on a consent item, Contra Costa County supervisors passed on a 4-0 vote a commercial cannabis health ordinance that drew zero comments from either the public or supervisors at Tuesday’s one-hour meeting. Supervisor Candace Andersen of San Ramon was absent.
The fact that the commercial cannabis health ordinance drew no attention was perhaps of secondary importance, given the fact supervisors had set the stage last month to have Contra Costa County voters consider a tax measure on the Nov. 6 ballot that would fund the enforcement of the commercial cannabis health ordinance.
Provided voters pass the tax measure in November, the tax on commercial cannabis from retail, distribution, and manufacturing enterprises could generate anywhere from $1.7 million to $4.4 million a year in revenue for the county to regulate the cannabis industry, protect public resources, and help fund public safety, health, and vital public services.
Some of the standards included in the newly adopted health ordinance are the following:
- Every commercial cannabis activity with a health permit must comply with all state and local laws; maintain a valid State License, County Land Use Permit and County Business Permit.
- Every commercial cannabis activity with a Health Permit must remain closed between 9:00 p.m. and 8:00 a.m. the following day.
- No cannabis or cannabis product may be smoked, ingested, or consumed on the premises of a commercial cannabis activity.
- The ordinance also includes standards that apply specifically to manufacturing, such as the use of volatile solvents is prohibited and retail sales delivery employees are required to examine government-issued identification cards upon delivery of products to customers.
- For retail establishments, the ordinance establishes waiting areas regulations.
- Inside each retail establishment, the permittee will display a sign including the following statement in bold print: “GOVERNMENT WARNING: CANNABIS IS A SCHEDULE 1 CONTROLLED SUBSTANCE. KEEP OUT OF REACH OF CHILDREN AND ANIMALS. CANNABIS MAY ONLY BE POSSESSED OR CONSUMED BY PERSONS 21 YEARS OF AGE OR OLDER UNLESS THE PERSON IS A QUALIFIED PATIENT. THE INTOXICATING EFFECTS OF CANNABIS MAY BE DELAYED UP TO TWO HOURS. CANNABIS USE WHILE PREGNANT OR BREASTFEEDING MAY BE HARMFUL. CONSUMPTION OF CANNABIS IMPAIRS YOUR ABILITY TO DRIVE AND OPERATE MACHINERY. PLEASE USE EXTREME CAUTION.”
Six areas of the county are off limits to the commercial cannabis ordinance. Those areas include Acalanes Ridge, Alamo, Bethel Island, Contra Costa Centre, Sandamond Slough, and Saranap.
In the event voters pass the tax measure in November, the commercial cannabis ordinance and health ordinance would go into effect in January 2019.
Supervisors Endorse Diesel Free by ’33 Resolution
Concerned over the human health effects and environmental impacts caused by the emission of greenhouse gasses including carbon dioxide and black carbon, or diesel fuel, the board of supervisors unanimously endorsed a diesel free “33 States of Purpose” reflecting a goal of eliminating diesel pollution by December 31, 2033. The Bay Area Air Quality Management District, that Board Chair Karen Mitchoff and Vice Chair John Gioia serve on, has established a challenge to other public agencies, especially transit districts, to cut down diesel emission.
The California Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment has determined that exposure to diesel exhaust can have significant health effects, including damage to lung tissue and increased risk of cancer.
It is estimated that 54 percent of the state’s total black carbon emissions come from on-road and off-road mobile sources powered by diesel engines, according to the California Air Resources Board.
80 Organizations, County Library Awarded Keller Canyon Foundation Grants
Supervisors allocated $1.5 million of Keller Canyon Mitigation Fund grants to 80 nonprofit organizations including a one-year $100,000 grant to the Mt. Diablo Unified School District to provide a modular public bathroom for the public library at Riverview Middle School in Bay Point for one year, July 1, 2018 through July 30, 2019. Before installation of the modular public bathroom Riverview public library patrons had to use the school restroom facilities when the school was in session.
Nonprofit organizations receiving $10,000 awards each were: Antioch Rotary Club, All Start Cheer Reaction, Inc., Contra Costa Family Justice Alliance, Craft Community Care Center, Inc., First Baptist Church of Pittsburg, Health Hearts Institute, Loaves and Fishes of Contra Costa, National Council of the United States Society of St. Vincent DePaul, Opportunity Junction, Inc., People Who Care Children Association, Pittsburg Senior and Handicapped Residential Community, Inc., Renaissance Entrepreneurship Center, Singing Eagle Foundation, Soroptimist International of the Americas, Inc., and CCHS Public Health Clinic Services.