Commission prohibits “marijuana establishments”

Commission prohibits   “marijuana establishments”

Commission prohibits “marijuana establishments”

The commission approved an amendment to a zoning ordinance that included the definition of “Marijuana Establishments” as defined by the state. The board previously wrote the zoning ordinance to prohibit medical marijuana establishments, but since the state legalized recreational marijuana, the county’s original ordinance also had to change.

The amendment addressed all zoning districts. None of the public offered comment.

Deputy District Attorney Gabrielle Carr suggested that the commission consider including “social clubs” as a prohibited establishment in the ordinance. Current ordinance prohibits consuming marijuana in a public place. Carr provided the definition of public place as “an area to which the public is invited, or in which the public may be invited, regardless of age.”

Commissioner French said that the “spirit of the law” currently prohibited consumption of marijuana in public. “If there is a change to that, if there is a specific set of legislation that comes down the road that … establishes a social club-type of scenario, then we will have to be very specific about that,” French said.

Carr said Clark County was the only other county to address “social clubs” relating to marijuana. However, Clark County approached “social clubs” through licensure rather than zoning.

Commissioner Marlene Brissenden expressed a desire to set a precedent. “My feeling on this is, I think it would really be cool to be on the forefront of saying no to the social clubs at this point,” she said.

Other commissioners didn’t feel comfortable in that regard. “I don’t believe we have an adequate definition of what a social club is,” French said. “I would hate to have to come back and re-amend the amendment if the legislation comes through.”

Carr said the language of the amendment as she wrote it related to the state’s definition of “marijuana establishments,” so the amendment would still apply if the state later clarified “social clubs” in its definition.

Carr’s explanation satisfied the commissioners’ questions, and they approved the amendment.