Expanding Allowable Cannabis from “M” to “A”: Joint Council Meets in Rio Dell

Rio Dell, Ca., (KIEM)- For months Rio Dell has planned to allow cultivation, production, and research related to medical marijuana within the city limits. However, with change coming from the state, allowing the use of recreational marijuana, the small north coast city is wondering if they should readjust their ordinance.

Citizens can purchase recreational cannabis outside of the area for personal use in the city if they are over 21. That will not change one way or the other, regardless of the current ordinance. If the city’s rules remain the same, producers and cultivators will only be able to generate “M” or medical use products. According to stake holders, that means Rio Dell based businesses will miss out on up to 25% of the sprouting cannabis market. They will not be allowed to produce an Adult or “A” use products legally.

So, Tuesday the City Council joined the Planning Commission in a joint session to tackle the topic. They studied the city staff recommendation to allow both “M” and “A” use cannabis. By meeting’s end a recommendation for an amended ordinance was drafted, and will be read initially in a City Council meeting in February. This puts local law makers just a few steps away from allowing recreational cannabis products to be generated in Rio Dell.

“Rio Dell has the benefit of a quick turn-around time,” City Manager Kyle Knopp explains. It’s clear law makers want to be responsive to developers, while still prioritizing the medical uses of marijuana products in the overall agenda. Due diligence, he explains, will not be tossed aside just to speed up the process. At the same time, it’s clear keeping the amendment process speedy is very important to everyone involved.

“Allowing ‘A’ uses…will help developers pursue ‘M’ research and ‘M’ uses.” Knopp says. He’s echoing the voices of stake holders (growers, and invested parties) who say the funds from recreational marijuana will help feed medical research, and boost the quality of production overall.