Encinitas cannabis customers soon will be able to receive the substance and related products in the comfort of their own homes as a result of recent City Council action.
To comply with state law, council members Feb. 20 gave preliminary approval of a municipal code amendment that legalizes deliveries of marijuana (as the plant is commonly called) within the city.
The action sets the stage for final approval in an upcoming council meeting, after which the regulation would become effective in 30 days.
Council members responded to a directive from the California Bureau of Cannabis Control declaring that commercial deliveries of the drug are legal throughout the state, regardless of local government regulations.
“In the case of delivery, I think it’s appropriate that adults who want to consume these products have the right do that legally,” Councilman Tony Kranz said in supporting approval of the ordinance amendment.
Seven anti-drug activists and residents spoke to the council either opposing the amendment or seeking a postponement of council action.
Judi Strang of the San Dieguito Alliance for Drug Free Youth urged the council to delay adoption because of resistance to it from other cities and possible legal challenges.
Council members, however, said they did not see the point of delaying it and creating a conflict with the state, as has occurred with the city’s state-mandated housing element.
The cannabis bureau’s mandate stems from the passage in 2016 of Prop. 64, the Control, Regulate and Tax Adult Use of Marijuana Act, which legalized adult use of recreational marijuana and created structures for regulating and taxing sales.
Many local government agencies have retained prohibitions on cannabis businesses and distribution while waiting for the state to provide direction.
While the Encinitas’ code amendment will end its ban on commercial delivery from outside sources, it does not affect the city’s ongoing prohibition of marijuana-related businesses sited within its borders.