Council adopts recreational marijuana regulations
The Sierra Vista City Council voted 5-2 to approve code amendments laying out local rules for recreational marijuana establishments and limits on what can be done with recreational marijuana while on City property at its meeting on Thursday.
Proposition 207, which was passed by Arizona voters in November, allows for the adult use of recreational marijuana within the state. The new law grants local municipalities discretion on whether to allow recreational marijuana establishments to operate within the city and on what zoning regulations to put in place, providing they are not more restrictive than those associated with medical marijuana establishments.
The Planning and Zoning Commission considered the proposed code amendments on Jan. 25 and voted unanimously to recommend their approval with some revisions. The commission recommended the 500 feet buffer between a recreational marijuana establishment and a school or place of worship (located outside the general commercial zoning district), a public park, another marijuana establishment, or public community center be reduced to 300 feet. They recommended maintaining the 500-foot buffer between recreational marijuana establishments and residential areas.
The amendments adopted on Thursday were approved with the recommended revisions from the Planning and Zoning Commission. The reduced buffer zone will also apply to medical marijuana establishments. In addition to the zoning provisions, the amendments prohibit the smoking, consumption, selling, distributing, storing, cultivating, manufacturing, producing, or displaying of marijuana on City-owned property.
Mayor Rick Mueller and Council Member Gregory Johnson cast the two votes against the proposed amendments, commenting that they support outright prohibition of recreational marijuana establishments in Sierra Vista. Following final action by the City Council on Thursday, the amendments will take effect in 30 days. Read more about Thursday's Council meeting.