A looming cannabis dispensary chain, Element 7, hit a wall in its attempt to set up shop in the former Saint Paulus Lutheran Church, as the SF Planning Commission slammed the brakes over accusations of violating retail formula rules. The venture has sparked a fierce tug-of-war between the ambitions of "Big Canna" and the ecosystem of home-grown businesses.
The SF Board of Supervisors' recent moratorium on cannabis dispensaries didn't halt the process for applications already submitted. Element 7, with dibs on a historically curious location, was one of the contenders in the race. The Planning Commission, however, was not amused.
The bid was met with significant opposition, citing the chain's aim to become the largest cannabis retailer in California and its current and pending permits for retail marijuana stores. Accusations of deceit in their affidavit added fuel to the fire. Opposition voices argue that the neighborhood is already "oversaturated" with four locally-owned dispensaries.
Despite a defense from Element 7's COO, the project lost unanimous support from the commission. Though they didn't outright deny the permit, they opted to defer their vote and ordered a more rigorous determination of Element 7's status as formula retail.
This incident could signal stricter scrutiny towards big dispensary chains in the current era of dispensary moratorium or an alliance among present dispensary owners to curb new players in the market. Continuie Reading the Full Story on SFist -->
Image: Saint Paulus Lutheran Church via Facebook