The Draft Environmental Impact Report is now available for public review and comment. The formal 45-day public review period begins on Monday, May 1, 2017. Written comments may be sent to the Planning Department at 891 Mountain Ranch Road, San Andreas, CA 95249 or by email to PlanningWeb@co.calaveras.ca.us.
When the EIR was first initiated, the intent was to adopt regulations in the form of a permanent ordinance, as staff was directed by the Board of Supervisors in February, 2016. The analysis of environmental impacts was therefore based on that draft regulatory ordinance. As such, the February 2016 ordinance remains the “project description” in the EIR, and the ban ordinance was subsequently developed and discussed as an “alternative”. All EIRs require development and discussion of various project alternatives that are less impactful than the project description so that these alternatives can become part of the public discussion under CEQA when discussing how to reduce environmental impacts.
Whether the Board chose to ban cannabis or regulate it, the respective environmental impacts of “status quo cannabis cultivation”, “reduced cannabis cultivation”, and “no cannabis cultivation” would all need to be analyzed and discussed as various alternatives in the EIR for the permanent ordinance. All were analyzed as “alternatives” in the EIR for the 2016 draft ordinance. Because the originally proposed regulatory ordinance and the currently proposed ban ordinance are both ways of imposing a regulatory scheme on cannabis cultivation & commerce (albeit at opposite ends of the range of choices) it was unnecessary to start over with a new project description and a new EIR.
The fact that the ban ordinance is discussed as an “alternative” rather than the “project description” does not in any way hinder the County’s ability to proceed with a ban or to rely on the EIR to support a ban. Indeed, the prior regulatory ordinance from February 2016 is actually the “worst case scenario” from a CEQA standpoint; whereas the ban ordinance is a less impactful alternative.
Other “alternatives” discussed in the original EIR besides 2016 ordinance and the current ban ordinance include the “no project” alternative (meaning that the status quo remains in place) and a reduced impact version of the 2016 ordinance limiting parcels sizes or zones in which cannabis could be cultivated. All four potential methods of regulating cannabis cultivation remain in the current draft, although the ban alternative was further developed and analyzed after the Board determined that its preference was to adopt a ban ordinance and to utilize this EIR for that purpose. The EIR supports the clear intent and direction of the Board to adopt a ban of cannabis cultivation in the County.
Draft Cannabis Ban Ordinance
ATTENTION CANNABIS CULTIVATION REGISTRATION APPLICANTS
Calaveras County staff is continuing to process the applications that were submitted last year after adoption of the urgency ordinance that created the registration program for cannabis cultivation. As a part of that review inspections are being conducted by the Code Enforcement Division and Environmental Health Department. The County intends to increase inspection activity during the next two months and fully expects compliance with the provisions of the ordinance.
The inspectors will be reviewing the site for compliance with all requirements of the ordinance, including fencing and security, storage of chemicals, hazardous materials, solid waste, erosion control, canopy size, permits for all structures and RVs, posting of registration forms, and setbacks. The County expects compliance with all of the standards at the time of inspection and non-compliance may result in denial of the cultivation registration application. An opportunity to correct minor deficiencies may be provided but is not guaranteed.
The requirements for compliance with the ordinance were expected to be met at the time your application was submitted. If a good-faith effort to comply was made and minor corrections can be made, a timeframe for compliance will be provided. Failure to provide satisfactory evidence to Code Enforcement within the timeframe provided of full compliance will result in denial of the registration. Please see the Proof of Correction form.
Please review the requirements of the ordinance if you have not already done so and ensure that you have satisfied each item that is required. If you have questions about the requirements you may contact Planning or Code Enforcement staff for assistance.
On May 10, 2016 the Board of Supervisors adopted an urgency ordinance adding Chapter 17.95 to the Calaveras County Code regulating Medical Cannabis Cultivation and Commercial Uses involving Medical Cannabis pending Environmental review and adoption of a permanent ordinance.
PERSONAL AND CAREGIVER APPLICANTS:
PLEASE FOLLOW INSTRUCTIONS PROVIDED BELOW WHEN REGISTERING. INCOMPLETE APPLICATIONS WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED.
*ALL LANDOWNERS MUST SIGN WHEREVER
A LANDOWNER SIGNATURE IS NEEDED*
Waste Discharge Requirements
Cannabis Cultivation Registration Information
September 27, 2016
December 13, 2016
January 31, 2017
Commercial Cannabis Business Tax Frequently Asked Questions
891 Mountain Ranch Road
San Andreas, CA 95249
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