In the political weeds, Kenwood dispensary, baby Shakespeare and more

Posted on September 4, 2019 by Sonoma Valley Sun

Jon Early wanted to, still wants to, open a cannabis dispensary in Sonoma. Such a business is of course legal in California. But when exploratory talks with city officials went nowhere, he formed Sonoma Citizens For Local Access, and hired an expert (not cheap) to write a ballot initiative making it possible. Eight hundred-plus signatures later, it met County requirements to go on the ballot, but, he says, “it’s been a year now since our qualified initiative was delayed by the City Council from appearing on the ballot for two years, until November of 2020.” The City, having stonewalled past the initial election deadline, is now finalizing its own ordinance. Early is waiting for an update from City Hall. “Please inform me within the next two weeks (now expired), one way or another, if the ballot measure meets all the legal requirements to be placed on the November 2020 ballot. And if it passes the vote of the people, that it will not be challenged or delayed any further by the City of Sonoma following the vote.” Would the city’s new rule supersede the ballot measure, if approved? Or vice versa? It could get heavy. Everybody pop a gummy and mellow out. 

Speaking of… what?… right, cannabis. Because a planned dispensary for Glen Ellen is on bureaucratic hold, a Kenwood outlet is the favorite to become the Valley’s first dispensary. (Those are legal in the county, which is way below projections on pot-related tax income). Sonoma’s Finest 2.0 is the company name. The plan: a shop in the Kenwood Shopping Center, vacated by Orpheus Winery. There’s lots of paperwork to be done, but attendees at a public meeting didn’t have much of a problem with it. Mainly parking and traffic concerns, as in, what if it gets too busy. 

Like a game of musical chairs, except school music classes were long ago canceled, some of the empty School District seats are being filled. Tom Stubbs has been named the interim principal at Sonoma’s Sassarini Elementary School for the 2019-2020 school year. Retired for four years, Stubbs served SVUSD for 17 years, 13 years as a teacher and four years as a vice principal… Stubbs steps in to fill the vacancy created when Andrew Ryan, the Sassarini principal for the past two years, took the Director of Human Resources position. As such, Ryan made the announcement about Stubbs and  Administrative Designee, Laura Monterosso. 

A newish grandmother shared insights about communicating with her toddler. Like all pre-talkers, he babbles in perfect conversational cadence. Deciphering it is kind of like watching a Shakespeare play, she advises. “At first you don’t understand a thing, but after about 10 minutes it starts to make sense.”

— Val Robichaud, [email protected]

Sun Editorial: The war on pot is over 


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