The vote does not immediately translate to an open application process for those seeking a permit to open a dispensary, but rather to begin the conversation and research into creating the rules and regulations that will allow medical marijuana sales in the future. With the total ban in place, City Council would have been unable to approach the topic with any real meaning. At least with the new amendment, Fresno can move forward on deciding what medical marijuana operations could look like within city limits.
“Our regulations currently are 170 pages of text of requirements, just for the bureau,” she said. “And then you look at them paying license fees, at the local level and at the state level, and our licensing fees range from $500 to over $120,000 every year. And then you add on the state cultivation tax and excise tax and the retail sales tax. And you see that the price of cannabis is going down, so they’re not making the profits they probably once were.”