Council Passing Cannabis Policy Slowwwly, Not Sure Where to Put the Joints

By Robert Haugh

The City Council is taking its time with marijuana. They’re passing the policy around slowwwly.  And they’re not sure where to put the joints.

Last night, the Council had another discussion about the cannabis policy. They’ve been discussing it since 2017. Santa Clara voters approved Measure M to allow cannabis dispensaries in the Mission City in November 2018. There’s currently a moratorium on dispensaries until June 2019.

The staff recommends the following:

  • Limit dispensaries to a total of 3.

  • Collect revenues quarterly from operators.

  • Limit dispensaries to industrial and light industrial zones.

The law limits the location of cannabis stores to be more than 600 foot from schools, rec centers, youth centers, and child care centers. So it won’t be in a lot of neighborhoods. Some council members want more data, like the impact on the police department. Some say they want to limit the zoning.

We learned from staff and consultants that expected tax revenue is down in most cities because the black market for marijuana is still cheaper.

We also learned that Teresa O’Neill supports a cannabis policy but is “one of those people who can actually say I didn’t inhale.”  (Note to O’Neill: you fooled us with your sandals).

The policy will come back at some time in the future for more discussion.

Authority Wants Bids From 49ers

The 49ers didn’t get proper Stadium Authority approval for a half million dollar contract for floor improvement at Levi’s Stadium. The contract was never brought to the Board. The 49ers are required to do that. The 49ers said in writing that they picked the lowest bidder. But they never gave the Board all the bids to prove it. So the Stadium Authority did not take “corrective action” last night to approve the contract.

Interestingly, Councilmember Raj Chahal tried to help out the team. He said the 49ers sent a letter saying they took the lowest bidder. But Mayor Lisa Gillmor wasn’t buying it. She said, “So they shouldn’t have any problem giving us the documentation.” Chahal backed down quickly.

Then Councilmember Karen Hardy weighed in. She said, “I thought we owned the stadium and when the authority of our Authority is thwarted, I’m frustrated.”  

The Authority asked for the item to be held and for the evidence to be presented next week. They don’t trust the team. Well, most of them don’t. Look for the Stadium Authority to make some changes to the procurement policy soon. It’ll be interesting to see Chahal’s position.

Other Stuff:

  • Two affordable housing agreements for projects off El Camino on Rambla Place were unanimously approved. There will be a combined 108 units.  Kudos to the Council and Staff.

  • A $5 million loan toward an affordable housing project at 2904 Corvin Drive was unanimously approved. It will create 145 units. Kudos to the Council and Staff.

  • Councilmember Hardy called into the meeting. She was with her daughter who’s expecting a baby. Congrats to her and her family.

  • Vice Mayor Patty Mahan missed another council meeting.


  1. Now I understand why Theresa can never make up her mind on anything. She has secondary smoke syndrome and her brain is fuzzy.

  2. Hi Robert, Where, exactly, is Rambla Place. Yes, it’s “off El Camino,” but where exactly? I found a partial sentence on the City website, “Aug 29, 2017 … … the Council approve two new street names “La Rambla Avenue” and “Rambla Place” to be added to the City’s Approved List of Street Names” but neither La Rambla Avenue nor Rambla Place appear on either google maps or on the City GIS maps.

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