Despite two council members expressing reservations, the Lodi City Council voted unanimously to back San Joaquin County Supervisor Chuck Winn in his opposition of a proposed county business tax on the sale of recreational cannabis.
Council members voted 5-0, with Councilman Bob Johnson voting via conference call, to adopt a resolution against the tax.
The resolution cited a number of reasons for their opposition, stating that marijuana cultivation attracts theft and violent crimes, growing operations require large amounts of water and high energy consumption, has caused millions of dollars in environmental damages, and risks the health and safety of county residents.
The resolution also stated that Measure B, the proposed tax, will not bring in the projected revenues supporters claim it will.
Councilman Doug Kuehne questioned the contents of the letter, stating that he believed some of the statements made in the resolution were based on data from before California citizens voted to permit legal use of recreational marijuana in the state.
Councilwoman JoAnne Mounce also raised concerns.
“I don’t agree with the fact that we don’t allow medical marijuana deliveries to patients,” she said.
Both, however, voted to back the resolution, noting that Lodi already bans commercial sale and delivery of marijuana — including medicinal cannabis — within the city.
While the resolution was just to oppose the proposed business tax, the failure of the tax will effectively kill a proposal to allow commercial marijuana cultivation and sales in the unincorporated areas of San Joaquin County. That proposal can only pass if a tax measure is passed to support it.
Winn, who represents Lodi and the surrounding area on the county Board of Supervisors, has already been joined by Supervisor Bob Elliott and other elected officials, including the mayor of Manteca, in his opposition.
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