Thanks From the Roots

By Montecito Journal   |   November 29, 2022

On behalf of the entire ownership team, thank you to the community for supporting our application for a new cannabis retail dispensary in the Carpinteria Valley. While we recognize we have some additional hurdles to clear, we are 100% confident that Roots Carpinteria will open for business at 3823 Santa Claus Lane in 2023. 

I also wanted to update the community on the very thorough, and lengthy process we’ve been undertaking. On Wednesday, November 16, the approval of a permit for our project was appealed to the California Coastal Commission. This makes the 4th frivolous appeal in almost as many months. 

Frivolous is a strong word that generally people would suggest means, “without a serious purpose or value.” I am not suggesting that people’s feelings about cannabis or even cannabis retail on Santa Claus Lane are frivolous. I recognize that they are heart-felt. At every step on this permit-approval journey, our team has reviewed, reconsidered, and responded to every single concern raised by the appellants and the public. It is part of our commitment to full transparency, responsiveness,
and accountability. 

One disappointing aspect of our opponents’ frequent appeals is their repeated use of the term “Youth Centers,” to describe what are essentially two Surf Camps. It is worth noting that under the existing zoning on SCL, Youth Centers are not allowed. This means if our opponents were to succeed in their goal of redefining these two family-owned businesses as Youth Centers, they would effectively and immediately become nonconforming and would need to be
closed permanently. 

A lot of local surfers would be very disappointed if the County unnecessarily designated Surf Happens and A-Frame Surf Shop as non-allowed Youth Centers on Santa Claus Lane simply to pacify the appellants of our project. The Roots Carpinteria ownership team does not want to see that happen to these much-loved local businesses. 

Roots Carpinteria’s business ethics, priorities, and commitments are about more than operational excellence, best management practices, or even standard operating procedures. While it is true that high operational standards, unbreachable ethics, and commitment to excellence will be on full display each day we are in operations, our store on SCL must and will also reflect our commitment to the vital matter of neighborhood safety and compatibility, and our annual program for community benefits and social
impact investments. 

But it’s even about more than that. We are, as a team, fully invested, and relationally committed to supporting our neighboring businesses. We will have a fully defined and understood community involvement program that will feature a variety of innovative ways to help our community, including the other businesses on SCL, succeed and flourish. As one powerful example, Roots pledges 2% of our annual gross receipts to be donated annually to several local nonprofits, charitable organizations, and foundations, including Surf Happens Foundation. 

In addition to that, as Roots Carpinteria has been dealing with the numerous frivolous appeals of our project, we have also been utilizing our government affairs team to work with the County, Santa Barbara County Association of Government, and even the State of California, to seek out available loans, grants, or other relief funds to assist the struggling businesses on Santa Claus Lane who have endured a disproportionate financial impact from the freeway construction, and also the disruption now caused by the County’s Streetscape and Beach Access Improvement Plan. While it’s not possible to guarantee our success in pursuing relief funds, we have an outstanding team of local government experts that we are using to help us accomplish this. We are doing this at our own expense even though if successful it will provide significant economic relief to the other businesses on the Lane including Thario’s, Garden Market, and Padaro Beach Grill.

Many who started out apprehensive or even reluctant about Roots Carpinteria coming to Santa Claus Lane have come around to become not just supportive but enthusiastic supporters of our store. This occurred through our concentratedly determined effort to openly address all concerns from the community, real or imagined. We will continue moving forward with this same spirit and commitment, including full transparency, responsiveness, and accountability.

Moreover, we have always recognized and even take comfort in the fact that education and information are natural antidotes to fearmongering and misinformation. This is an important part of the normalization process taking place these past several years as communities throughout our county and state get personally acquainted with not only cannabis retail stores but also the extraordinary health benefits available to millions of people thanks to legal cannabis. Indeed, our vision and higher purpose as a company have always been to support our communities by opening stores and providing a safe, legal, carefully regulated, and taxed location for ethically sourced cannabis and cannabis-related products. This vision guides us in executing our mission statement and every important decision we make as owners, partners, and operators. 

The Carpinteria Valley community and the rest of the county have our personal and deeply held commitment that these values I’ve shared here will not change.


Luis Castaneda,
Director, Retail Operations, Roots Carpinteria

Hats Off to Giordano

Just a simple “hats off” to Jeff Giordano for his letter, “Tilting Towards Tyranny.” Five supervisors have unchecked authority. Citizens’ only recourse is removal from office. But it’s an uphill battle when supervisors rake in so much money from cannabis. 

For three years or more, many of us have been interacting with the Planning Commission and the Supervisors directly about simply giving the only logical interpretation that can be given to the existing ordinance for cannabis growing. The ordinance ALREADY requires “best available technology.” No one disputes that this is carbon filtration or at least carbon scrubbers. So why, why, why have the supervisors not had the fortitude to join Colorado and so many others in stating simply and plainly that the existing ordinance requires growers to install this technology?! When odors become excessive, supervisors are apparently urging growers to do this on a friendly basis as good neighbors. That’s great! But why not require it? It’s not as if growers don’t have the financial means to do so when, as Jeff points out, they are making $700 a pound profit on a $100 investment!

Come on supervisors, wake up!

Jim Mannoia

Repeat Processes

I don’t think people understand what is really going on with China’s seemingly heroic efforts to eradicate COVID.

COVID is a gift sent by Mao Tse Tung from beyond the grave to Xi Jinping, China’s current dictator. Mao locked down the country during the long Cultural Revolution while he consolidated absolute power. Xi is getting practice doing the same.

Lenin pioneered the original playbook whereby the communist dictator declares a “new economic policy” or “glasnost” whenever the people get tired of the dictator’s unfulfilled economic promises. Party leaders invite capitalist investment by promising they are ready to turn away
from totalitarianism.

Once capitalist nations like the U.S. rebuild the economic infrastructure, the dictator locks the country back down into communist feudalism for another 50-year dark age, until the process is repeated again.

Kimball Shinkoskey

Time for New People to Surface

I genuinely respect those who disagree with me, but I remain convinced that Joe Biden is, by far, the worst U.S. President in my lifetime. Despite his continuous attempts to place blame elsewhere, his numerous failed policies include being the cause of our present inflation, our southern border crisis (about which he does nothing), and the reality that we are no longer energy independent. He has needlessly drained our strategic oil reserves and spends time embarrassingly pleading with unfriendly nations to increase oil production when we have what we need here in the good old U.S.A. He totally fails to understand that we are going to require fossil fuels for many more years simply to produce and generate the items needed for renewable energy. Biden’s disastrous actions truly represent a “cart before the
horse” situation.

I acknowledge the character flaws of Donald Trump, but his domestic and foreign policies were far superior to those of Biden. I’d much prefer a President Trump to a President Biden. However, I am sorry that Trump recently announced his intentions to enter the 2024 presidential race. We need “new blood” and I would much prefer people like Ron DeSantis, Nikki Haley, and Glenn Youngkin to emerge as candidates. At this point in time, I think a DeSantis/Haley team would be ideal. We also need to “clean house” and replace the likes of Nancy Pelosi, Chuck Schumer, and Mitch McConnell with competent people who may have differing views but will work for the people and not solely for their respective
political parties.

Our republic is a great county, one of the few where people can openly express views on who should govern it and how it should be governed. I have expressed my thoughts. I hope others will do likewise.

Sanderson M. Smith, Ed.D.

Public Service Stations a Service

I watched #45 make his comeback speech on C-SPAN.

The beauty of this public service station is not only do you get to see the speech, but you also get to see the real feeling of what it’s like to be in
the room.

No talking pundits to deal with.

No chyrons to read.

The speech was very tame and fairly well given.

Then as the camera panned out, some guests started leaving early.

Then it got really interesting.

Mr. Trump’s paid staff were directing those who wanted to leave to stand or sit back down.

So much for freedom of choice in the Sunshine State.

Steve Marko


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