County P&Z plans to work on dispensary zoning next week

KINGMAN - The Mohave County Planning and Zoning Commission will tackle the issue of zoning for medical marijuana dispensaries on Jan. 12.

Voters approved Proposition 203, which allows the use of marijuana for medical purposes, in November. The new law states that local governments cannot control the use, growth or sale of medical marijuana, but they can determine where dispensaries and marijuana cultivation buildings can be located.

County Planning and Zoning staff are recommending allowing dispensaries and cultivation buildings to locate in any area where a drug store could be located, except for neighborhood commercial zones and all dispensaries must be at least 2,000 feet from another dispensary and 1,000 feet from a school, school bus stop, childcare center, library, public park or church and any residentially zoned area.

The county Planning and Commission will meet at 10 a.m. on Jan. 12 at the County Administration Building, 700 W. Beale St.

The cities of Kingman and Lake Havasu City are already looking at updating their zoning ordinances. The Kingman Planning and Zoning Commission in December recommended that the City Council adopt a strict set of guidelines for dispensaries. The proposed ordinance would allow cultivation of marijuana only in districts zoned rural residential and dispensaries only in districts zoned heavy industrial.

It would also restrict dispensaries to a 100-square-foot building and only allow sales between the hours of 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. A dispensary could not be located within 500 feet from another dispensary or residentially zoned area and it would have to be more than 2,500 feet from a school, church, mental health facility, substance abuse center, community center or public park.

Cultivation buildings could not be located within 2,500 feet of any property zoned for homes, apartments, schools, churches, public parks, mental health facilities, substance abuse centers or community centers or less than 2,500 feet from a dispensary.

Lake Havasu's Planning and Zoning Commission began considering the issue on Wednesday, Jan. 5.