Staff Report

An information meeting to help residents better understand how cannabis is being regulated after legalization in California will be held at 7 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 17, in the Parish Hall of Bethania Lutheran Church at Atterdag and Laurel streets in Solvang.

Cannabis is already being grown near Highway 246 west of Buellton and along Santa Rosa Road, organizers noted, and applications for county permits and licenses have surfaced in additional local neighborhoods. 

The meeting is sponsored by WE Watch, a local nonprofit group that focuses on land-use issues. A spokesman noted that WE Watch takes no position on the use of cannabis.

Those attending can learn more about what is and will be happening in the Santa Ynez Valley and all unincorporated areas of the county regarding cannabis cultivation, nurseries, microbusinesses, distribution, manufacturing, testing and retail sales.

WE Watch asked the county Board of Supervisors in December to consider review and revision of portions of the county’s Cannabis Land Use Ordinance, which may occur as soon as mid-February.  

Deputy Executive Officer Dennis Bozanich, considered the most knowledgeable county staff member regarding cannabis rules, will give a talk and answer questions.  He is expected to discuss topics including:

  • Background information
  • Compliance plans for licensed operators
  • Enforcement plans for unlicensed operators
  • Local permitting and licensing, including land use permits and business licenses
  • Cannabis taxation
  • California state licensing
  • Challenges facing county residents 

Bozanich will be joined by Sergeant Frank J. Vasquez and Detective Charles Anderson of the Sheriff’s Department and Dianne Black, director, and Dan Klemann, deputy director, of the county Planning and Development Department.