Ron Miller, Nick Hosig, and Ramon Baguio (left to right, near doorway)
Grantville Navajo Community Planners, Inc., on July 21 voted 9-4 to delay a decision on the proposal to operate Grantville Greens, a 623-square-foot medical marijuana cooperative on the 4400 block of Glacier Avenue. The vote directed applicants Nick Hosig and Ron Miller to return after they addressed issues in a City of San Diego report and received the city's response.
Planners voting against the delay included Grantville land owner Dan Smith, who said he's received inquiries from prospective dispensary operators. "These guys are actually what you should have" if a conditional-use permit is approved.
San Diego's ordinance prohibits cooperatives within 1000 feet of locations, including schools and "minor-oriented facilities.” A July 8 assessment letter from development project manager Edith Gutierrez stated "staff must recommend denial" because the dispensary didn't "meet minimum separation requirements." The letter cited several "significant project issues" and detailed options including withdrawing the application or submitting new evidence.
The city released a report that listed 36 review issues that ranged from separation requirements to lighting. The 5 cleared issues included the project location in the Montgomery Field "airport influence area." According to the report, the airport reviewed the project and "has no comments or objections."
The letter stated Grantville Greens was within 1000 feet of three "minor-oriented facilities": Baby Go Round and American Ballet & Dance Academy on Riverdale Street, and World Taekwondo Institute on Mission Gorge Road.
Ramon Baguio, who specializes in conditional use permits, said the applicants were working to address issues. He noted that Baby Go Round is a resale business.
Gutierrez also cited the "potential" of a minor-oriented, school, park, and facility within 1000 feet of the location. Baguio said the Sam and Rose Stein Education Center on Decena Drive was "exactly at the border," that Grantville Park on Vandever Avenue "wasn't even close," and Aikido of San Diego on Riverdale was a martial arts studio with "youths under the supervision of adults."
Baguio said "every single" application was "deemed too close to "youth-sensitive areas;" and Target could fall into that category. "You have to be in the middle of the desert [for approval]. Some here" would like that.
Approximately 50 people attended the meeting. When Adams asked for a show of hands, dispensary supporters outnumbered opponents.
While some speakers acknowledged the matter was a land-use issue, most discussed other concerns.
Larry Webb said his bifocals and hearing aids were signs of a "long life. I've walked the journey of people whose kids fried their brains on drugs."
Janet Luna gestured to her son, saying he was diagnosed with stage-four cancer nine months earlier. Medical marijuana keeps the condition at bay "and is better than taking a lot of morphine that makes you sleep all day," she said.
While John Pilch of the San Carlos Area Council said the applicants' appearance was "premature" because they hadn't cleared issues, Rob Hall of the North City Prevention Coalition wanted planners to consider whether dispensary patrons would spend money at other businesses. "Maybe they'll buy some Fritos and bean dip."
Jesse Adcock called the stereotype "offensive. Take the chance to let in two guys who care and are not just driving around buying bean dip," he said.
In a July 22 interview, Smith said he would have preferred a motion recommending approval subject to applicants meeting land-use criteria "line items."
He called Hosig and Miller "compassionate" and added, "I'm tired of the city jerking people around. If an applicant gets [a permit]; they've earned it."