Over the past few weeks, the debate about whether marijuana businesses will be allowed to open in Pico Rivera has been going back and forth. The City Council and the Planning and Zoning Commission debated the issue and ended up in a stalemate. If marijuana businesses are allowed in Pico Rivera, it would be the first in Lennox…

(Pico Rivera, CA) — While Pico Rivera officials are considering the city’s first ban on marijuana dispensaries, they are still considering allowing medical marijuana storefronts.

Long-time readers of KPRC might remember that we looked into the possibility of medical marijuana shops moving into Pico Rivera, and we often followed up on that and other issues regarding the cannabis industry and our neighbors in the City of Industry.

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On the first day of recreational marijuana sales in California, customers purchase inside the 420 Central dispensary in Santa Ana. Corona city officials are contemplating legalizing a maximum of 17 dispensaries, or shops, per 10,000 inhabitants in the Riverside County city. (Orange County Register/SCNG file picture by Kevin Sullivan)

Pico Rivera City Council members have placed the legalization of industrial, medicinal, and retail marijuana cannabis enterprises back on the table, almost two years after prohibiting them.

Money is the cause.

During a study session during the Aug. 31 council meeting, Councilman Andrew Lara said, “There is potential income of $700,000 per year for the city.” “That would place the oil and gas sector in the top third of tax income generators. It’s difficult not to think about the tax revenue.”

In addition, Pico Rivera voters supported Proposition 64, which legalized recreational marijuana in California, by a 53 percent to 47 percent margin in 2016, according to Lara.

“I have a feeling that number would be considerably higher today,” he speculated.

But, as other council members pointed out, there are still certain issues that need to be addressed before marijuana can be legalized.

In a phone interview on Tuesday, Sept. 7, Councilman Erik Lutz stated, “All five of us will look at this from a neutral lens.” “I want to weigh the advantages and disadvantages.”

“Do you have to beef up security and deploy more cops in the area when you have a lot of retail?” Lutz said.

Residents, school board members, parents, members of the faith-based community, and other members of the community should be contacted to find out what they think about marijuana-based companies, according to Councilwoman Monica Sanchez.

Pico Rivera City Councilman Gustavo Camacho asks whether the city wants to be known as a cannabis city.

A municipal staff study stated that prohibiting commercial cannabis businesses will “prevent potentially negative health, safety, and quality of life issues” when the council prohibited them in 2019.

“Loitering,” “increased security concerns to neighboring homes and businesses,” “increased risk of theft and other crimes,” “dangerous trash, water and energy consumption, and strong smells that may be detected outside the property boundaries,” according to the staff assessment.

On January 8, 2016, the City of Pico Rivera’s Planning Commission recommended a change of zoning code that would allow medical marijuana businesses. Medical marijuana businesses will only be allowed in the industrial zoning district, however, and the City of Pico Rivera has decided to take a second look at this ordinance. The Planning Commission’s recommendation was based on a zoning code amendment that was passed in 2011. The stipulation only allows medical marijuana businesses in an industrial zone as long as they will be located at least 1,000 feet from schools and churches. The Planning Commission’s recommendation now heads to the City Council for consideration.. Read more about deadly crash in pico rivera today and let us know what you think.

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