Pot grower denied annexation into city
A medical marijuana growing operation in Fruitvale that met the criteria to annex into the city of Grand Junction was denied that opportunity Monday night.
On the eve of a municipal election, in which voters will decide whether medical marijuana dispensaries will be allowed inside city limits, council members’ vote split 3-3 on allowing a business, Green Natural Solutions, to annex from Mesa County into Grand Junction.
The tie vote equated a failed measure. Council members Sam Susuras, Bill Pitts and Gregg Palmer voted down the measure. Mayor Teresa Coons, Tom Kenyon and Bruce Hill voted to allow the annexation.
City Council members previously had received the heads-up from city staff that some medical marijuana businesses inside Mesa County have expressed interest in annexing into the city limits. Monday night was the first time council members had received a formal request.
“They’re trying to take the problem out of the county and into the city,” Susuras said as a reason for voting against the annexation.
“I think this was completely unjust,” owner Michael Cardile countered after the meeting. “I felt that they wanted to use the land-use decision as a basis for their decision.”
Medical marijuana shops are not allowed in the county after voters imposed a ban in November.
The results of a similar ballot question to include the area inside the city limits should be known by Wednesday.
There also is a moratorium on commercial medical marijuana growing operations inside the city limits.
Caregivers anywhere in Colorado can grow a specified number of medical marijuana plants for patients.
Cardile petitioned to change zoning on the parcels from planned unit development to commercial 1 at 507 and 512 Fruitvale Court. A change in zoning is consistent with the comprehensive plan for the area and meets the criteria to be annexed into the city. Residents in areas near Grand Junction boundaries can request to be annexed into the city limits.