Written by Gabriel Dillard
The Fresno City Council Thursday adopted an ordinance regulating the production and sale of cannabis.
Passed on a 5-2 vote, with Councilmembers Steve Brandau and Garry Bredefeld opposed, the rules lay out regulations and zoning of areas for cultivation, manufacturing, distribution, testing and retail businesses.
Areas around Highway 99 and 180 will be designated as hubs for activities including cultivation, distribution and manufacturing, and seven retail outlets for medicinal cannabis will be allowed in the first nine months of legal operations, according to a news release from the office of Councilmember Clint Olivier.
After that, seven more retail outlets would have the opportunity to be approved.
“Today, the City of Fresno has taken a huge step forward in fighting the illicit drug market that has harmed our communities for far too long,” said Council Member Olivier. “Passing this ordinance marks the launching point for transformational change; not only will medicinal cannabis patients have safe access to their medicine, but our Professional City Staff will have the revenues needed to address some of the lingering problems our neighborhoods have faced since the Great Recession. I am excited to see the lasting change the introduction of this new industry will bring to the City of Fresno.
It could take as long as a year before cannabis businesses are given the green light to open in Fresno.