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Many of you may have heard the County is cracking down on the requirements for odor prevention and implementation. Apparently, there have been complaints by neighboring properties of the cannabis cultivation odors and the County is implementing new conditions for use permit project approval…and these conditions are enforceable through code enforcement cases.

Title 21 section 21.67.100 sets forth the requirements for the conditional use permit application. section D2.11 it is required that the applicant address odor prevention devices. However, under Chapter 7.90 of Monterey County’s Business Permit Regulations section 7.90.100 A.8, which governs the commercial cannabis business permit, it requires that odor prevention devices and techniques, such as ventilation system with a carbon filter, shall be incorporated to ensure that odors from cannabis are not detectable offsite.

One may think it is enough for your application to be deemed complete by stating that you will implement carbon filters and closed HVAC systems to control odor. Your application might even go so far as to detail the max exhaust and recirculation capabilities of your carbon filter – but this is not enough. From this point forward not only will all applicants will be required as a condition of project approval to ensure that all odor prevention devices and techniques, such as a ventilation system with a carbon filter, be incorporated to ensure that odors from cannabis are not detectable off-site, but prior to issuance of Commercial Cannabis Business Permits, the owner/applicants shall provide plans and information to the satisfaction of the Chief of Planning, describing how odors will be controlled and how the odor control devices will be maintained.

Jennifer Rosenthal is a local cannabis and criminal defense attorney. The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and does not reflect an official position of the Association.

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