OCEANSIDE — The proposal for a new medical cannabis and distribution facility is on its way to Oceanside City Council after the city’s Planning Commission recently cleared the way.
During the July 26 meeting, planning commissioners unanimously approved two conditional use permits (CUPs) and one waiver of locational requirements for J&K Manufacturing’s proposed medical cannabis manufacturing and distribution facility to be located at 2420 Industry St.
This is the third proposed medical cannabis manufacturing and distribution facility for the city. Two other such businesses currently exist in town: Left Coast LLC and Buddiez. Both of those businesses required CUPs and location waivers as well.
As per city code, the city can grant waivers to cannabis businesses that would fall within the 1,000-foot separation requirement from residential districts, places of worship, schools, childcare facilities and other regulated use facilities.
J&K Manufacturing’s proposal is located approximately 130 feet from the nearest residential district to the north and about 570 feet from a residential district to the south. It also sits about 610 feet from one religious facility and 760 feet from another, about 915 feet from a liquor store and 990 feet from a childcare facility.
According to staff, the actual walking distance from the proposed facility to either of the residential districts is much farther, and Oceanside Boulevard sits in between the two religious sites and the proposed facility.
“To me, this looks like the ideal location,” said Commissioner Robyn Goodkind. “It’s smack in the middle of an industrial zone, and the residential areas are blocked by Oceanside Boulevard.”
At previous Planning Commission and City Council meetings, members of the public have voiced their concern regarding the several location waivers that have been granted for cannabis facilities.
Staff has noted that locational waivers are allowed by city code and are broadly applied to all regulated uses, not just cannabis businesses. Additionally, cannabis businesses are only allowed in industrial districts of the city, which are usually located near residential districts, meaning cannabis facilities wouldn’t be able to operate in the city if location waivers were not approved.
Cannabis facilities are also quite different from other regulated uses because they are only allowed to operate indoors.
Staff told the Planning Commission that the proposed medical cannabis manufacturing and distribution facility would not be harmful to the surrounding area, thus it should be approved.
“We believe we’ve met all the requirements for the CUPs,” said James Bilotta, of J&K Manufacturing. “We’re ready to add something positive to the city.”
J&K Manufacturing originally submitted local license applications for manufacturing and distribution in July 2019. The applications underwent four phases of review, and the business was granted both licenses in May 2020. The licenses were then renewed for 2021, which is required annually.
Once approved by the council, the business will submit plans to the city to access the recreational cannabis market as well.