Next week Tuesday 3/24, the Vallejo City Council will waste over $2 million dollars on an issue that is not a major priority—and that should be making money for the City, not costing it.
Medical marijuana dispensaries are not a priority issue on anyone’s list in Vallejo. There are plenty of other important projects to fund: the $6 million dollars in unfunded pavement maintenance would be a good place to start. Investing in high speed broadband for Vallejo residents and businesses would be another. Neither one of these projects will move forward because the city budget is barely breaking even for the first time since bankruptcy.
Instead the City has budgeted at least $550K for lawsuits against dispensaries and will probably spend at least twice that. The City will also forego at least $600K in revenues by refusing to accept taxes from dispensaries. Earlier this month, they refused over $50K in monthly taxes.
This week the dispensaries will sue the City to stop giving away public taxes—taxes that 76% of Vallejo voters approved in November 2011. Last week the dispensaries filed an initiative ordinance to let voters decide on dispensary regulations. When that goes to special election because of the Council’s stubborn fixation on this non-problem, it will cost the City’s taxpayers another $875K. But like the Mayor said, he will spend any amount of the people’s money to close down the dispensaries—leaving legitimate patients with no place to get their medicine and costing Vallejo taxpayers millions.
Contact the City Council now and tell them to be sensible: leave a few of the dispensaries open and enact reasonable regulations. They could start by respecting the dispensaries that are well-managed and pay their taxes–that would eliminate over half of them. It’s time for peace with marijuana, not an expensive and unwinnable war.
You can also email the individual Council members here: