Pubdate: Mon, 05 Apr 2010
Source: Red Bluff Daily News (CA)
Copyright: 2010 Red Bluff Daily News
Author: Geoff Johnson
Bookmark: (Cannabis - Medicinal)


Supervisors are slated to vote on two long-standing  county issues Tuesday.

Both a vote on a controversial medical marijuana  ordinance linking 
property size to amount of allowed  growth, and a vote that could put 
the Sun City Tehama  housing project back on track, are scheduled for 
the  afternoon.

A salve for cannabis crime, or bad medicine?

At 1:15 p.m. the board is scheduled to take up a vote  on a new, 
complaint-driven policy that would put a cap  on the number of 
marijuana plants medical cannabis  users could grow, and push growth 
away from bus stops,  churches and schools.

The way the policy is supposed to work, the rules would  only come 
into play if neighbors of cannabis growers  contact the county.

Cannabis growers, provided they have a doctor's  recommendation, can 
grow up to 99 plants if their  property is 160 acres or lager, but 
will be limited to  12 mature or 24 immature plants if growing on a 
property 20 acres or smaller.

They could lose all their plants and be charged for  cleanup for 
violating these rules or growing within  1,000 feet of a school or 
other prohibited area. The  ordinance would require a six-foot fence 
around the  growth.

Medical marijuana proponents have overwhelmingly  rejected the 
proposal, arguing it makes no allowances  for medical need, while 
supporters have pushed for the  measure as a question of safety, 
fearing armed  marijuana thefts. If passed regulations could go into 
effect in 30 days.

Back to the future

Following the medical marijuana vote, a vote  re-approving documents 
relating to Sun City Tehama, a  3,320-acre housing proposal north of 
Red Bluff, is  scheduled. The agenda lists the vote for 1:45 p.m. but 
votes on issues as divisive as medical marijuana are  seldom brief. 
It remains to be seen whether the same  can be said of Sun City 
Tehama. A series of legal  battles have, most the most part, silenced 
supervisors  on the topic, though this would be their chance to stop 
the project.

Officials have been meeting in closed-door sessions for  months over 
the project, ever since a lawsuit from the  California Oak Foundation 
required the county to  consider an outside opinion about how much 
the developer should spend on Interstate 5 improvements.

The county, having followed those orders, found the  court-mandated 
opinion in line with the project's  original requirements. Staff is 
recommending the  project be reapproved Tuesday unchanged, but not 
before  a public hearing on interstate funding is held.

It could have been a simple fix, but a vote was delayed  again and 
again when negotiations began anew over who  should pay for future 
legal defense.

The new developer agreement the county will consider  would transfer 
future legal expenses over to the  landowners, namely, Nine Mile 
Investment Company, Inc.  and NOBY Venture, LLC, in exchange for a 
lein and cash  deposits. Developer Del Webb and its parent company, 
Pulte Homes, are currently responsible for those  expenses.

Even before the delays, the project blueprint had been  gathering 
dust for years.

When the housing market toppled, it pushed the project  into the 
future, with Pulte continually stating  construction would only begin 
when market conditions  are favorable. The Tehama County Board of 
Supervisors  meets at 10 a.m. Tuesdays in its chambers at 727 Oak St.

More information is available by calling 527-4655 or  visiting .
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MAP posted-by: Jay Bergstrom