July 13, 2018 MJ Shareholders
Three residents have launched a petition drive in an effort to overturn a new Antioch ordinance that later this month would allow marijuana retailers and related businesses to apply for permits to operate in the city.
The “Not in Antioch” referendum would repeal the Cannabis Business Overlay District ordinance the council approved by a 3-2 vote in late June. Former councilman Manny Soliz, Parks and Recreation Commission Chairman Rodney McClelland and resident Diana Patton are backing the measure.
If the group collects the needed 5,664 verifiable signatures by July 31, it’ll effectively put on hold the City Council’s cannabis zoning ordinance, City Clerk Arne Simonsen said. The council then must decide whether to rescind the ordinance or place it on the ballot for voter approval.
“We’re wanting the council to overturn the ordinance, since there was no examination of the collateral damage caused by this hastily adopted ordinance,” said Soliz, who wrote the referendum. “When an ordinance is adopted under such rushed and incomplete analysis, and in direct opposition to public and professional testimony, you have to wonder what special interests are being addressed?”
Soliz said he’s mainly concerned that the city didn’t how the ordinance would affect public safety considerations or establish a good process for taxing and licensing the marijuana businesses. He said the city deserves a more comprehensive strategy.
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