At their June 13 meeting, the council voted 3-1 to place the ordinance on the next general election ballot in November of 2020.

“It’s meant to help conduct business,” mayor Ken Palfini said of Weed’s recently approved Commercial Cannabis Cultivation Ordinance that provides guidelines for businesses that want to grow cannabis in city limits.

At their June 13 meeting, the council voted 3-1 to place the ordinance on the next general election ballot in November of 2020. Allowing voters to decide was one of two options the council had; the other was to repeal the ordinance altogether after a successful referendum process initiated by Lake Shastina resident Jennifer Dickinson.

Dickinson said previously that she is not necessarily against medical marijuana but she is concerned with excess water and electricity usage as well as potential pollution.

“This (referendum) was spearheaded by people who never came to meetings, never spoke up,” said Palfini. “Their intent was to ... disrupt the process.”

Palfini and Weed’s City Manager Ron Stock called the referendum’s credibility into question because of some confusion with County Clerk Laura Bynum’s initial count of referendum signatures last month.

Dickinson said she is concerned that the council is no longer listening to those with valid concerns regarding cannabis in the city.

Weed resident Ray Strack noted that the cannabis industry has the potential to bring hundreds of jobs to the city.

Elizabeth Tabor, owner of La Florista in Weed, was concerned that the movement was created with a “lack of education and understanding,” when it came to how regulated the industry is concerning the manufacturing and sale of marijuana.

“By drafting the ordinance itself you (the city) were doing the right thing,” said Tabor. “The repeal takes the control out of our hands.”

City councilor Sue Tavalero said that the council’s goal in allowing dispensaries and cannabis in city limits was to attract more business. “We put more restrictions (in the ordinance) than the state requires, because we did not want it to be ‘I bought weed in Weed,’ ... we wanted less of an attraction, more of a business.”

The council voted 3-1 to place the ordinance on the next general election ballot, with Kim Greene casting the sole “no” vote. Palfini, Tavalero and Stacey Green voted yes.

The city will be responsible for election expenses.

Other business

The City of Weed unanimously approved an ordinance to amend the zoning code in regard to manufactured homes within the city.

The ordinance was modified to bring manufactured homes up to state code, and would no longer require the need for a conditional use permit to inhabit one within city limits.

A “manufactured home” implies that the structure is transportable in one or more sections, and is built on a permanent lot and is designed to be used as a single-family dwelling when connected to utilities. These structures meet all requirements of inspection.

Manufactured homes gained popularity in the community after the Boles Fire.

McKinnis retired

Finance Director Kelly McKinnis has retired. Mayor Ken Palfini read a proclamation thanking him from the city council and added his personal thank you for all his years of service and dedication.

McKinnis served as the Finance Director since 1987. He also is a founding Charter Member of the Weed Rotary Club, has served on multiple state and local boards, has served as a board member for the Small Cities Organized Risk Efforts, has coached several Weed High School baseball teams, and has filmed high school football for more than 30 years.