As we approach 2018, our community is faced with a new reality – the legalization of adult use cannabis. And with that comes increased responsibility for each jurisdiction to provide clarity and sound regulation about what that means for those in Napa County who want to grow, manufacture, sell, and consume.

How do we keep recreational products out of the hands of children? How do we ensure the safety of consumers? How does cannabis work in partnership and compete with existing land use? How do we tax cannabis locally? How do we continue to protect our environmental resources and the Agricultural Preserve while complying with the voter approved law?

In response to these questions, and many more, local government officials countywide formed the Napa Countywide Cannabis Roundtable, a subcommittee that conducted research and engaged in discussions about the issues surrounding the passage of Proposition 64 and the regulation of medical and nonmedical cannabis. The roundtable’s creation and subsequent discussions were posted online along with presentations, was closely followed by local news outlets, and attended by many who voiced their opinions.

The goal is to share information and identify where consistencies in each jurisdiction’s ordinances might be achieved when possible. After months of research and discussion, the roundtable is winding down so each community can craft their respective ordinances with ample time for scrutiny.

Our next meeting is scheduled for 1-4 p.m., Sept. 28, on the third floor of the Administration Building, 1195 Third St., in Napa. While this is another chance to engage with your local elected officials on this matter, it is not the only opportunity to provide feedback and input about how each ordinance is shaped.

Although it is the last scheduled meeting on the books, roundtable members are in agreement that we might need to check in with each other after the first of the year to compare notes. We will keep you posted if that happens.

This is a new endeavor for all of us, and we’re looking to the State for guidance and understanding about where we go from here. In the meantime, our commitment is to develop a system that ensures consistency in applying the law locally while protecting our community’s resources. We appreciate your patience and understanding as we navigate this new challenge ahead.

If you have questions about the roundtable or want more information, please contact Nelson Cortez at Nelson.Cortez@countyofnapa.org or 299-1478.

Calistoga Mayor Chris Canning

Napa County Supervisor Ryan Gregory

Co-Chairs, Napa Countywide Cannabis Roundtable

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