LEMOORE — Next month voters will have to decide whether to make recreational marijuana legal in California but Lemoore city leaders are already regulating recreational marijuana in the community if Proposition 64, also known as the Adult Use Marijuana Act, passes.

On Tuesday, the Lemoore City Council passed an ordinance that would limit personal cultivation within city limits. In other words, if Proposition 64 passes, people would be allowed to smoke or cultivate marijuana in their own home but require them to not cause a nuisance to nearby residents.

The ordinance would also place a ban on commercial cultivation, processing, delivery and dispensaries for recreational marijuana which falls in line with what the city currently has in place for medicinal marijuana.

Other requirements include building codes, a ventilation system to ensure nearby residents could not detect the smell, property owner authorization for those who rent and security measures for those who cultivate marijuana inside their residence.

Before receiving a 4-1 vote on Tuesday, a few council members gave their thoughts on the marijuana ordinance.

Councilman William Siegel, who voted against the city ordinance on Tuesday, does not agree with the restrictions and regulations the state and local governments are placing in regards to the proposition.

“I am against the language where they dictate to the city and the counties what they can prohibit and what they can’t,” Siegel said in an interview. “My position is if it becomes legal, I want the government out of the way. If it’s legal, it’s legal.”

Councilman Jeff Chedester said at the meeting that the ordinance is intended to protect the people in the community.

“It’s a safety issue,” he said. "It’s a perception issue, and it’s something I don’t want my family and my kids exposed to.”

Lemoore resident Tom Reed said he understands Siegel’s concerns but also understands what the rest of the City Council and the Lemoore Police Department are trying to do.

“All we can do is the best we can do,” he said. “We take the situation as it comes.”

The city law will be in effect in 30 days if Proposition 64 passes next month.

This reporter can be reached at csandoval@hanfordsentinel.com or 583-2422. 

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