Report Criticizes Their Objectives, Ethics, and Dismissal of Public Complaints Says the Santa Barbara Independent.

Here’s their report

A Grand Jury report launched Monday blasted the Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors for its mismanagement of the county’s hashish manufacturing, for dismissing public enter, ignoring main environmental impacts, and permitting extreme manufacturing, amongst different criticisms.

“Instead of a balanced approach carefully evaluating how the cannabis industry would be compatible, both as to amount of acreage and location, the board simply opened the floodgates. These ordinances must be amended,” the report states.

Last yr, right now, hashish farms in Santa Barbara County held 35 p.c of all cultivation licenses issued in California final yr, regardless of the county having only one.eight p.c of the state’s land.

An advert hoc committee was fashioned in 2017 to evaluate and create rules for grownup use and hashish cultivation within the county, with Supervisors Das Williams and Steve Lavagnino as the one two supervisors on the committee, so it was not topic to the Brown Act and due to this fact not open to the general public.

The committee’s first goal was to “develop a robust and economically viable legal cannabis industry to ensure production and availability of high quality cannabis products to help meet local demands, and, as a public benefit, improve the County’s tax base.” This goal, the report contends, was the mistaken one to have.

“This objective became the guiding principle for the board,” the report reads, which is what led the board to extra simply justify the environmental impacts — lack of agricultural sources and air high quality, greenhouse-gas emissions, and odor. Smell, particularly, sparked huge neighborhood outrage and hours of public backlash.

The City of Carpinteria appeared to be hit with hashish odors the toughest, and on two events the varsity district wrote letters to the board saying Carpinteria High School was being blasted by sturdy hashish odors to the purpose that by afternoon, the scholars and workers have been reporting complications from the “nauseating odor.” The Santa Ynez Valley additionally voiced complaints, notably wineries and tasting rooms that stated the skunky odor drove away enterprise.

“This was not an unexpected result of the board’s actions in creating the cannabis ordinances,” the report states. “They knew about the quality of life concerns and chose the revenue potential of cannabis instead.”

The report additionally cited a slew of moral points with the board’s hashish ordinances, beginning with the preliminary advert hoc committee. “The jury learned that notes and minutes were not prepared in order to avoid any Public Records Act Requests for such documents. The lack of a paper trail does not fit with the concept of open government which seeks input from all interests.”

In addition to the shortage of transparency within the advert hoc conferences, the board allowed hashish trade lobbyists open entry throughout the creation of the ordinances, and the report states that the lobbyists have been seen recurrently “roaming the halls of the board’s offices.” The report obtained copies of emails from hashish lobbyists and hashish growers to boardmembers that have been “unnerving.”

“The tone of these emails appeared at times as if to direct specific actions to the board members and gave the perception of an attempt to command instead of recommend,” the report stated. “Understanding that no such authority exists with the lobbyists, the Jury felt that limits on such direct conversations should have been established by the board members receiving these emails.”

The report recommends that the Board of Supervisors:

• direct the county planning and growth division director to arrange Environmental Impact Reports addressing every area of the county after holding public hearings to judge public considerations;

• develop new challenge goals for the environmental influence reviews that mirror a stability between hashish, conventional agriculture, and the residents of the county;

• require all future advert hoc committees be open to the general public and topic to the Brown Act;

• develop requirements that require the supervisors to publicly disclose all entry granted to lobbying people or teams;

• require all cannabis-related allow functions and licenses pending, who declare authorized nonconforming standing, to show their claimed standing;

• require all future ordinances involving taxation embody the treasurer-tax collector in its creation;

• droop all unpermitted hashish operations till proof of odor management is accepted by the Planning Commission;

• set up, workers, and empower an unbiased ethics oversight fee for Board and its workers;

• require supervisors to publicly disclose marketing campaign contributions from donors who’ve issues pending earlier than the board;

• and require these members receiving such marketing campaign contributions to recuse themselves from these issues or return the marketing campaign contributions.

The Board of Supervisors has 90 days to answer the report, which will be learn in full at sbcgj.org/2020/Cannabis.pdf.

“The jury believes the Board of Supervisors, in their hubris, failed the people of Santa Barbara County,” the final line of the report reads. “Now they must amend the cannabis ordinances to regain the people’s trust.” 

 

 

THE REPORT / PDF

Cannabis

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