Nevada County releases details about temporary medical commercial cannabis permits | TheUnion.com

Nevada County releases details about temporary medical commercial cannabis permits

Nevada County officials have set June 20 as the tentative start date growers can begin applying for temporary medical commercial cannabis permits, a first for local cultivators.

The Board of Supervisors is scheduled to vote at its regular Tuesday meeting on the temporary licensing program. Supervisors meet at 9 a.m. at the Eric Rood Administrative Building, 950 Maidu Ave., Nevada City.

Supervisors would implement the temporary licensing program through an urgency ordinance, which would take effect immediately. It requires a four-fifths vote to pass.

"It ain't perfect, but it's ours and it's better than nothing," said Heather Burke, a Nevada City cannabis attorney.

The urgency ordinance calls for a proposed minimum permit fee of $542.49. The county would bill for any additional time required for processing the permit, viewing plans, inspections and code compliance.

Supervisors are scheduled to vote June 5 on a fee schedule.

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"Appointments are required to submit complete applications as well as to schedule compliance inspections," county documents state. "This will help to not substantially impact existing County services. Appointments will be made on a first come, first serve basis."

Officials haven't yet set a date for when applicants can make appointments.

The urgency ordinance calls for a three-step process: application submittal, project review and site inspection. Growers will apply with the county's Community Development Agency. A site inspection will occur after a permit is approved.

The county proposes no cap on the number of permits. Officials encourage growers to submit applications by Oct. 1. All temporary licenses expire Dec. 31.

The temporary licensing program would exist within the current grow rules, not the proposed ordinance that remains months away from passage. The existing rules include zoning and acreage restrictions, along with plant limits.

A maximum of 25 plants is allowed on over 20 acres under current rules.

The permanent ordinance, still a draft, would allow maximum grows of 10,000 square feet.

Supervisors opted at a special called May 1 meeting to implement the temporary program. The move opened the door to legal, medicinal commercial cannabis cultivation months before the county passes a permanent ordinance.

County officials have said the permanent ordinance requires an environmental impact report, expected to take months to complete.

To contact Staff Writer Alan Riquelmy, email ariquelmy@theunion.com or call 530-477-4239.

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