Inter-Departmental Correspondence

License Board



November 15, 2010


November 30, 2010


Notice to applicant and appellants





Honorable Board of Supervisors


Jim Eggemeyer, Chair, License Board


Executive Summary: Appeals from Granting of Application for Medical Marijuana Collective License, 2676 Bay Road, Redwood City, California, Applicant: Sans Souci Medical Collective



Conduct a hearing on appeals filed by Sheriff Greg Munks, District Attorney James P. Fox, and members of the public from the granting of the application of Sans Souci Medical Collective for a license to operate a medical marijuana collective at 2676 Bay Road, Redwood City, California.



State law, including the Medical Marijuana Program Act of 2004 (the “MMPA”), provides a limited defense to criminal prosecution for those who “collectively cultivate” medical marijuana. The MMPA permits local government to regulate the collective cultivation of medical marijuana consistent with state law. The Board of Supervisors has adopted Chapter 5.148 of the San Mateo County Ordinance Code (Regulation of Collective Cultivation and Distribution of Medical Marijuana) requiring that medical marijuana collectives in the unincorporated area obtain a license issued by the County License Board. The County Ordinance Code requires the License Board to make certain land use and law enforcement elated findings before a business license can be issued to a medical marijuana collective. Among the required findings is that the proposed operation actually meets the State law criteria for classification as a “collective” and that the proposed collective will not have significant land use impacts.


Ordinance Code section 5.148.040 (b) also provides, in part, that the approval of a County License for a medical marijuana collective shall require the specific findings which are set below in the Discussion portion of this memo.


Pursuant to the County Ordinance Code, decisions of the License Board are appealable to the Board of Supervisors.



At a public hearing on October 18, 2010, the License Board considered Mr. Bradley Ehikian’s application for a County of San Mateo Medical Marijuana Business License. The Planning and Building Department and Sheriff’s Office each submitted reports and recommendations to the License Board before the public hearing.


The Planning and Building Department staff advised the License Board that, in its view, the operation of a proposed location of the facility at the intersection of Bay Road and Hurlingame Avenue, just south of Woodside Road, would not adversely affect the economic welfare of the nearby community or the use of any property used for a school, playground, park, youth facility, child care facility, place of religious worship, or library, and that the proposed use would be sufficiently buffered in relation to any residential area in the immediate vicinity so as not to adversely affect that area. Planning staff concluded that there was no land use-related basis for denial of the application.


The Sheriff’s Office, however, advised the License Board of its view that the application should be denied because, given the proposed scale of the collective operation in terms of membership numbers and the upfront capital costs to construct the collective facility, it would be a large-scale business enterprise rather than a member-run collective.


After consideration of the matter, the License Board granted the application and the County Sheriff and District Attorney have appealed this action to the Board of Supervisors, as have Mr. Michael Morris and 39 other members of the public.


Mr. Morris contends that there is a school, recreation center or a youth center located within 1000 feet of the proposed collective, which, if true, would make operation of the collective there unlawful under the Ordinance Code. He also asserts that operation of the collective would have various negative impacts on the surrounding community, given the nature of the various land uses and businesses in the vicinity, including social services agencies, parks, day care providers, playgrounds, schools, and parks.


Prior to the hearing before this Board, Planning staff will analyze and prepare a written report that addresses in detail the specific matters that have been raised in appeal of the License Board’s action.