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SLO staff recommends puff, puff, pass a Nipomo marijuana dispensary permit 

      A proposed medical marijuana dispensary in Nipomo is one step closer to becoming a reality, thanks to SLO County’s Department of Planning and Building staff.The staff is recommending the approval of a minor use permit for Ethnobotanica. The company, which currently offers mobile dispensary services, is seeking to open a brick-and-mortar at a 2,600 square-foot location at 2122 Hutton Road in Nipomo.

     According to a report submitted by department staff, plans for the dispensary meet land-use conditions passed by the county Board of Supervisors in 2007, which mandate that medical marijuana retail outlets be located at least 1,000 feet away from certain locations, including schools, parks, and playgrounds. The report also stated the Ethnobotanica provided a detailed security plan for the location, which will include indoor and outdoor cameras, as well as an on-site security guard who will be posted at the store for 10 hours a day, seven days a week.

     While staff’s recommending approval, the South County Advisory Council voted not to recommend approval of the dispensary. The decision on whether to approve the permit goes before the county Planning Commission on July 9 at 9 a.m. in the county Board of Supervisors chambers on Monterey Street in SLO.

     If the commission approves the permit, the decision can be appealed to the Board of Supervisors. The board has a history of stymieing plans to open dispensaries. They voted to deny minor use permits for dispensaries on appeal in 2008 and 2012 and upheld denial of a permit for another in 2010.

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