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Residents circulate anti-pot petition in Encinitas

A group of residents is hoping to send a message to the city council through a petition: marijuana does not belong in Encinitas.

Encinitas Citizens Against Pot (ECAP) has started an online petition to object to the cultivation, sale and manufacturing of marijuana in the city.

“By standing against pot in Encinitas, we are working to preserve our communities by maintaining the character and property values in our residential and commercial districts, protecting our children from easy access to marijuana and its harmful effects and promoting the safety of our neighborhoods,” according to the website, citizensagainstpot.com, which was created in late August.

Nearly 400 signatures had been gathered by the afternoon of Sept. 22. The group is hoping to gather about 1,000 signatures from Encinitas residents, said Maureen “Mo” Muir, a San Dieguito Union High School District board member and member of ECAP.

However, Encinitas City Clerk Kathy Hollywood said she has not received any notices regarding Encinitas Citizens Against Pot or their intent to file a petition.

Hollywood said the group would only have to file with the city if its goal was to place an initiative on the ballot.

Muir said the group is waiting to file its petition until the city council has made its decision on whether to allow the commercial marijuana industry in Encinitas.

“Most residents of Encinitas are not aware that the commercial marijuana industry is actively pursuing Encinitas City Council,” Muir said. “There has been very little outreach from our city about this issue and residents need to know that they have the right to oppose commercial marijuana in our community.”

Last month, the Association of Cannabis Professionals (ACP) filed its intent to circulate a petition aiming to let the voters decide how the substance should be handled in Encinitas.

The proponent group’s goal is to gather enough signatures to place a local initiative on the ballot regarding how marijuana should be regulated, according to a letter sent to city staff on Aug. 22. It is also seeking to file similar petitions in Carlsbad, Oceanside, Vista, Chula Vista and Santee, according to The San Diego Union-Tribune.

Muir said the ACP is solely acting on a financial interest.

“They don’t care about our community character, protection of our children from well-established dangers of marijuana to developing brains and bodies or whether our home values plummet due to commercial pot businesses in our neighborhoods,” she said. “They stand to make millions in profit from this.”


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