Sonoma County now has 2 lawsuits against their poorly written cannabis regs

Sonoma County now has 2 lawsuits against their poorly written cannabis regs


Friends of Graton just released this:

A prestigious law firm, Shute Mihaly and Weinberger, LLP found that Sonoma County’s proposed cannabis ordinance and its supplemental mitigated negative declaration failed to adequately analyze the environmental consequences of ministerial permitting as required by the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA).

The County’s Chapter 38 proposal allows permits for up to 65,733 acres of outdoor, indoor or mixed-light cannabis to be issued through a ministerial process where there is no public notice or project-specific CEQA analyses.

The proposal removes a number of health, safety, and nuisance protections for neighbors, and fails to increase the proposed inadequate setback requirements.

Shute Mihaly and Weinberger filed the attached letter ,with an extensive list of Exhibits and Attachments, on March 18, 2021. It details the deficiencies in the County’s proposal to expand commercial cannabis cultivation without adequate analyses of the impacts to, among other things, air quality, water supplies, aesthetics, and fire safety/emergency access. The law firm made two findings:

  • Sonoma County cannot legally proceed without doing a full environmental impact report to analyze the whole of the project and to identify areas appropriate for cannabis cultivation versus sensitive lands that should be excluded; and
  • Sonoma County cannot legally adopt a ministerial process because discretionary decision-making is required. 

If protection of water and biotic resources is your main concern: Shute Mihaly and Weinberger LLP also filed on behalf of Friends of Mark West Watershed with a focus on impacts associated with watershed lands. CLICK  here.

Friends of Graton (FOG)