The Mendocino County Board of Supervisors has given a concession to cottage cannabis growers, moving to reduce permit fees for those who have since the beginning objected to the reportedly onerous costs.
Supervisor John McCowen, after hearing public comments on the matter, felt the need to clarify the county’s rules on cultivation — that every person growing cannabis needs a Mendocino County permit, except those who are exempt for personal use or as a caregiver, neither of which are for commercial purposes. He said there appears to be widespread misconceptions about what flies and what does not.
“In the meantime, a lot of people seem to be proceeding as if, ‘I can legally grow 25 plants, and I’m not at any risk here,” said McCowen. “And I do not believe that the Sheriff’s Office, by any stretch, is out there targeting 25-plant cultivators, but if they are in the neighborhood conducting an operation against someone else that they have targeted…then potentially, 25-plant growers can get swept up in that.”
He added that having a permit application on file with the county does not guarantee a pass from the sheriff, but it “probably helps.”
Undersheriff Randy Johnson agreed, stating that most smaller backyard grows are being well handled by Code Enforcement. The Sheriff’s Office has stated before that it is mostly interested in going after environmental violations, as those are running rampant in the county.
Regarding the fee reductions, Supervisor Carre Brown seemed to think the board’s concession was too big, voting against the final numbers.
“As a county, we need cost recovery,” she said….
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