Cannabis Appeal Denied
On Tuesday, November 1, the Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to deny an appeal of the approval of a Coastal Development Permit to operate a cannabis retail store, Roots Carpinteria, on Santa Claus Lane. The appeal was made by a group of aggrieved neighbors and the public calling themselves Preserve Access on Santa Claus Lane, as well as Steven Kent. The appellants were represented by attorney Jana Zimmer.
The appellants cited seven appeal issues, which included conflicts with Coastal Act policy, traffic and parking issues, the proximity to youth-serving programs, inadequate traffic and parking analysis, inadequate review under CEQA, incompatibility with the surrounding area, and other items which the shop’s owners and managers, as well as County staff, refuted.
The store secured approval for a CDP by the Santa Barbara Planning Commission in September to operate on Santa Claus Lane. The project includes interior building improvements and minor changes to the exterior of the currently vacant location, which was most recently occupied by an art gallery. Tenant improvements proposed to the interior of the building include a check-in area, a retail area with restroom, a service counter and payment area, a secure cannabis storage room, an office, an employee break area, a janitor’s closet, a server room, and a secured cannabis intake area. Windows will be frosted for security and privacy. The property includes 12 on-site parking spaces, six of which will be dedicated (by signage posted on site) to on-site Roots employees and customers. Hours of operation will be from 9 am to 9 pm, seven days a week.
The appeal was not unexpected according to Luis Castaneda, director of retail operations for Roots Carpinteria. “Our goal has always been to remove the negative stigma associated with cannabis and show how a dispensary can operate with integrity and can be positive members of the community,” he said during the Board of Supervisors hearing, adding that Roots opened a dispensary in Lompoc in 2019 much to neighbors’ chagrin, but has slowly gained the trust and respect of the community. The company is owned by Pat and Maire Radis, Victor Sanchez, Castaneda, Beth Thuna, and David Garcia.
For more information about the project, call (805) 637-9699.