It was an unsurprising turn of events, as many people questioned the need for a stringent sweep of new rules. City staffers had proposed to ban outdoor marijuana cultivation and processing, limit indoor activities, and add city codes that would explicitly prohibit medical marijuana delivery services. Citing the Cross plantsas well as the potential criminal activity, a grand jury report, and recent case lawcity staffers proposed to ban all outdoor growing operations and limit cultivation and processing to 50 square feet indoors or in an allowed accessory building. Additionally, city staffers recommended creating specific language to eliminate delivery services, with the exception of deliveries to no more than two peoplea rule they argue is already in place because the code doesnt allow for such uses. Its not a prohibition, which many jurisdictions have done and which the courts have said that the city could do, said SLO Community Development Director Derek Johnson. But the proposed ordinance drew immediate negative reaction from medical marijuana advocates, whove seen dispensaries pinched out of every corner of SLO County, and heavy law enforcement scrutiny of delivery services. A lot of times, I think people are looking for any excuse to ban this type of activity because they fear it, said Don Duncan, California director for the group Americans for Safe Access. Residents near the Cross home said theyre in favor of medical marijuana for its intended purpose, but they draw the line with people who they believe are abusing existing laws. Its not about us trying to prohibit the cancer patient from getting their marijuana, said Brett Bargenquast, whose email to city officials was included in the ordinances staff report. But this is the reality of people abusing the act, and it needs to be restrained. In the proposed ordinance, city staffers pointed directly to the Cross growing operation, and pointed to additional incidents when people were held hostage and/or robbed for their marijuana, though the incidents werent identified specifically as involving medical marijuana. Capt.
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