Opinion » Shredder

How the NIMBYs stole cannabis


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Move over green meanie Mr. Grinch, there's a new NIMBY bully in town. And whoever it is, they're coming for you, 1st District Supervisor John Peschong.


No, it's not the same boring old farts saying, "Read my lips: No new houses."

It's not even the cantankerous curmudgeons shouting, "We won't stand for mental health services in our neighborhoods!"

Or the boujee bad apples decrying, "There's no space for homeless help on my block!"

This new breed of negative Nelly is brought to you by Proposition 64, and although the old NIMBYs put faces to their rallying cries, these anti-cannabis bulldogs are hiding behind a title they can stay behind: SLO Cannabis Watch Group. They fancy themselves the stalwart protectors of "SLO County neighborhoods" against cannabis cultivation that is apparently as smelly as a pig farm.

Oh, so cannabis smells like actual human shit? God, I had no idea. How can people put that in their bodies?

Also, just so you know, SLO Cannabis Watch "concerns localization not legalization." Cue eye roll! That's the freakin' definition of NIMBY! But, it's pretty clear that's a BS statement. The pot-watchers don't like the little Christmas tree looking plants, don't want the plants anywhere near them, and don't think the county should have passed an ordinance allowing their cultivation. But, you know, they're totally fine with it being grown elsewhere.

Are you ready for a math problem? According to this watch group's wacky little website, a single cannabis plant yields 1,000 joints. If you have 141 "cultivation permits"—FYI, those are not permits, those are just registrations, which give people the ability to apply for a permit—and each property grows cannabis on 1.5 acres, the county gets to smoke 740 million joints each year!

Bravo brave souls. Who thought that one up? Inquiring minds want to know.

Way to keep us up to date on a statistic that isn't really relevant to the discussion at all. Joints are so 40 years ago. It's all about cartridges and vape pens now. You're showing your age.

Battling against the many ills of the hard-fought San Luis Obispo County Cannabis Ordinance must be tough! And the 141 cannabis cultivation registrations this county handed out like candy a grandma forced a grandkid to share with their frenemies?

"SLO County bowed to the industrial cannabis lobby," the website states.

Umm. Remember how unhappy marijuana growers were after the ordinance was finally voted on? And, there's also the fact that a majority of those registration holders still have a long way to go to get their hands on an actual permit. Well, never mind that, there are more important things to attend to, like the biased media that the pot industry has in its pocket. What a bunch of liberal stoners! Amirite?

"There is a significant pro-pot industry bias in many of our local media outlets, too. It is wholly irresponsible that the cannabis influencers have not been called out on such serious matters," the NIMBYs state loud and proud. And the only one willing to do anything about it is them! Gosh. So brave.

I feel like they're talking about me! Or us, over here at New Times. It seems like every time the word cannabis was on a SLO County Board of Supervisors agenda, someone brought up the pot ads in the back of our paper. Gosh. So proud.

Finally. I get blamed for something! Yay! Now Peschong can't take all of the credit for flushing this county's rural neighborhoods down the skunky toilet in the name of a very public process that created the already restrictive ordinance this NIMBY group is complaining about, private property rights, and a vote that legalized recreational cannabis! As if. Politicians and those silly little laws they have to abide by. Amirite?

Meanwhile, the guys and gals over at Pot Watch 2019 are so pissed at Peschong, they've basically told him to get with their side of the program or else! Like or else he's gone! Gosh. Really? Has anyone actually filed to run against him in 2020? So far I can't see anyone.

Who is the Anti-Cannabis Cabal going to find to run against him? Ian McPhee? You know him! He's the dude who owns McPhee's Grill in Templeton and went on a crusade against the 3-acre grow and greenhouse approved on a 77-acre parcel along York Mountain Road.

"When I say no grow, I mean no grow," he told the county Board of Supervisors at a hearing in March. Ooh. It's like, "Read my lips: No new cannabis grows!"

Or, the vineyard owner who's championing the legal system by filing lawsuits willy nilly against approved cannabis farms! Stephanie Shakofsky filed a lawsuit against that York Mountain project and one north of Paso Robles—which I don't really understand. Can you live in two totally separate places?

OK, Shakofsky only filed two, but still, there haven't been many cannabis operations actually approved to get up and running yet! Only about a quarter have gone through the planning process, and then they still have to deal with all the appeals and lawsuits filed by nosey cannabis watchers from across the county! Gosh. Δ

Shredder is a badass boujee Grinch, so back off NIMBYs. Send ideas and comments to [email protected].



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