Cathedral City to decide fate of marijuana dispensaries

Cathedral City to decide fate of marijuana dispensaries

CATHEDRAL CITY, Calif. - Cathedral City banned medical marijuana dispensaries in 2009, but as some Coachella Valley cities see the tax benefits they've brought, it's decided to revisit the issue.

The City Council has a big decision to make. It will reject or welcome three dispensaries in the city.

"We've had feedback from people who think it's a great thing and also heard from people who have concerns about it," said City Manager Charles McClendon.

Rosa Gonzalez, 62, was diagnosed with insomnia 5 years ago.

"Is use it for sleeping every night. Instead of pills, I smoke," said Gonzalez.

She wants more options to shop for her medicine. McClendon said council members who support the ordinance want to help.

"They believe it's a service that would benefit the community to have available so they don't have to go to other cities to get a product they need," said McClendon.

If the council approves the ordinance, it would go into effect Sept. 12, according to McClendon. The city won't accept applications until then.

Dispensary doors could as soon as November or the beginning of 2015. The locations depend on the applicants.

"They'd have to go find a location. There are separation requirements. They can't be within 600 feet from a daycare, school or park and also can't be 1,000 feet from each other," said McClendon.

To give the economy a boost, Palm Springs approved a 10 percent tax on pot. The city took in nearly half a million dollars just in the first six months of the year.

Come November, Cathedral City voters will decide on a 15 percent tax.

Gonzalez said if the pot clinics follow the rules, she supports them.

"They should all be contributing their city, should all be doing the right things or else they shouldn't be here," said Gonzalez.

comments powered by Disqus

Photo Galleries