Nearby Thousand Oaks medical pot dispensaries selling recreational products

A large lobby sets the tone on Tuesday, February 1, 2022 at the Leaf Dispensary, one of two medical cannabis dispensaries in Thousand Oaks.

The two medical cannabis dispensaries in Thousand Oaks came together Tuesday night in their bid to start selling recreational cannabis.

City Council voted 4 to 1 to introduce an ordinance allowing Leaf Dispensary and Legendary Organics to do so.

The ordinance must be adopted by the council at its meeting on Tuesday. This would change the city’s current cannabis regulations. If passed, it will enter into force 31 days later.

Leaf and Legendary are the only cannabis dispensaries in Thousand Oaks.

Mike Johnson, Leaf’s chief marketing and sales officer, said Thursday that the introduction of the ordinance was a long time coming.

“We had hoped that by communicating with the city and providing the necessary information, they would be able to make the judgment they made,” he said.

Ned Davis, managing member of Legendary, also welcomed the decision.

“We are extremely pleased and grateful that the city council has added adult use to the city’s cannabis ordinance,” he said.

Recreational cannabis is also known as cannabis for adult use.

Time to: Thousand Oaks, two medical cannabis retailers ask the city to allow the sale of recreational pot

The two medical cannabis dispensaries opened in February. In late March, representatives from both asked the city for permission to start selling recreational cannabis to boost sales.

They say that unless they can start selling recreational cannabis, they will close in a few months. They argue they can’t compete with dispensaries outside of Thousand Oaks that sell medical and recreational cannabis, as well as services that can legally deliver cannabis into the city.

Voting to introduce the ordinance, Councilor Al Adam said: “Times have changed, it’s incumbent on us to let these people go with adult use because I’m convinced that if they don’t, they will fail.”

Councilman Ed Jones voted in April against having city staff write the draft ordinance. But he reluctantly voted Tuesday night to introduce it.

“I was very supportive of medical, but I’m not completely sold” on recreational sales, Jones said.

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Councilman Kevin McNamee voted against introducing the ordinance.

“Adult cannabis use leads to the use of other drugs,” he said Thursday. “He captures the hearts and minds of our young people and their enjoyment in life comes from drugs rather than doing well in school or learning skills to succeed.”

Plus, McNamee said, “we don’t need more drugs on the street,” he said.

Council member Claudia Bill-de la Peña and Mayor Bob Engler also voted in favor of introducing the ordinance.

During public comments Tuesday evening, several speakers expressed support for allowing the two dispensaries to begin selling recreational cannabis.

“Thousand Oaks is at a crossroads right now,” said cannabis wholesaler Seth Backus, who supplies products to local dispensaries. “You have the black market, which is rampant. And none of these products have been tested and they most likely contain pesticides and mold.”

If the council allows Leaf and Legendary to start selling recreational cannabis, “they will provide a safe product to our community,” he said.

Mike Harris covers the county towns of Moorpark, Simi Valley and Thousand Oaks, as well as countywide transportation. You can contact him at mike.harris@vcstar.com or 805-437-0323.

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This article originally appeared on Ventura County Star: Both TO dispensaries move away from selling recreational pot

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