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File #: 21-0540    Version: 1
Type: Agenda Item Status: Approved
File created: 3/26/2021 In control: Board of Supervisors
On agenda: 5/18/2021 Final action: 5/18/2021
Title: Hemp Ad Hoc Committee recommending the Board conceptually approve an Ordinance for a permanent ban on hemp cultivation in El Dorado County. FUNDING: N/A
Attachments: 1. Public Comment Rcvd 5-18-2021 BOS 5-18-2021, 2. Public Comment BOS Rcvd 5-17-21, 3. Public Comment BOS Rcvd 5-14-2021
Related files: 21-0399, 21-0045, 20-0468, 20-0896, 20-1181, 20-1481, 20-1647
Title
Hemp Ad Hoc Committee recommending the Board conceptually approve an Ordinance for a permanent ban on hemp cultivation in El Dorado County.

FUNDING: N/A
Body
DISCUSSION / BACKGROUND
From September of 2020 to present, the Hemp Ad Hoc Committee held six public meetings to discuss developing reasonable regulations for the cultivation of industrial hemp in the County. The Hemp Ad Hoc Committee discussed several topics, including reasonable setback amounts, odor concerns, and pollen drift concerns. In those meetings, the committee discovered that the science and data surrounding the impact of hemp cultivation on agriculture is new and evolving.

The committee was particularly concerned of the potential impact of the cultivation hemp on the emerging cannabis industry and potential effects on wine grapes and other existing EL Dorado County agricultural crops. Santa Rosa Junior College has embarked upon as multi-year program to define and quantify the agricultural impacts from hemp and corresponding mitigation measures that could be applied. The Ad-Hoc committee has encouraged the continued collection of information/data from this source and others to develop a better understanding of hemp growing best management practices (BMP) as Industrial hemp is a derivative of the plant Cannabis sativa L. and that plant can also be grown for cannabis purposes. That can make it difficult to visually distinguish between Cannabis sativa L. grown for industrial hemp purposes and one grown for cannabis purposes. This makes it difficult for law enforcement and code enforcement to independently distinguish between an industrial hemp plant and a cannabis plant without obtaining samples for testing and having those samples tested. The committee was concerned that a grower might be incentivized by the similarity between the plants and the comparatively liberal hemp laws to cultivate cannabis disguised as industrial hemp instead of obtaining a Commercial Cannabis Annual Operating P...

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