Dear Las Crucens,Do you want to have cannabis dispensaries in your neighborhood? City Council will soon be voting on this issue. See below for more info and how to get involved if this is important to you. ALLOWING CANNABIS DISPENSARIES NEAR NEIGHBORHOODSAs early as the June 5th meeting, City Council will be voting on whether to whether to remove the 300-foot buffer requirement between cannabis dispensaries and residential neighborhoods. The proposed ordinance would also remove the requirement for a 300-foot distance between cannabis businesses. You can download the proposed Ordinance here: 👇👇👇Ordinance No. 3037 – PDF The cannabis retailers and the City are asserting that it is too difficult to find places to operate that are 300 feet away from residential areas and other cannabis businesses. This Ordinance would remove the wording shown in yellow from the City’s requirements for Cannabis dispensaries:
|———————-To me, this is yet another example of the City placing economic benefits over the health and well-being of the community and children especially. Studies have shown that increasing density of cannabis retailers leads to higher rates of youth substance abuse. Las Cruces Public Schools also spoke before the Council a few weeks ago and reported they are seeing increased issues with children vaping cannabis in schools, specifically including vaping devices from NM dispensaries. In the Appendix to the Ordinance (shown at the bottom of this email), you can see that there are already 100+ cannabis businesses registered with the City, so there is certainly no shortage of these businesses in the City. NOTE: The City Council voted on this same issue last Fall. At that time, the removal of the buffer zone did not pass because Mayor Miyagishima, Mayor Pro Tem Gandara, Councilor Abeyta, and Councilor Corran voted to maintain the buffer. TWO WAYS TO TAKE ACTIONIf you do not want cannabis dispensaries to be allowed near neighborhoods, the City Council needs to hear your voice on this issue. Potential talking points are below. Previous cannabis issues have seen a massive dominance of support from the cannabis industry in Las Cruces, and there have been relatively few others speaking in opposition. PLEASE EMAIL/CALL CITY COUNCILMake sure to send individual emails instead of one group email if you want a response. Please be respectful in your communications for the maximum positive impact.Mayor – Ken Miyagishima – [email protected] – (575)-541-2067District 1 – Kasandra Gandara – [email protected] – (575)-541-2066District 2 – Tessa Abeyta – [email protected] – (575) 541-2068District 3 – Becki Graham – [email protected] – (575)-541-2070District 4 – Johana Bencomo – [email protected] – (575) 541-2071District 5 – Becky Corran – [email protected] – (575)-541-2076District 6 – Yvonne Flores – [email protected] – (575)-541-2069City Clerk – Christine Rivera – [email protected] – (575) 541-2115 ATTEND THE CITY COUNCIL MEETING TO GIVE PUBLIC COMMENTThis item will probably be on the agenda for the June 5th City Council meeting at 1pm at City Hall (700 N Main St, Las Cruces, NM 88001). We need as many people as possible to attend and give comments on this issue.|
POTENTIAL TALKING POINTSHere are some potential talking points about this issue. Please do NOT copy-paste these verbatim. Your communications will be most effective if you add in your own words as well. Please do not remove the 300-foot buffer zone between cannabis businesses and single family residential areas. Instead, please add this same buffer protection for multi-family residential areas. The children of Las Cruces deserve this protection.These references show that increased density of cannabis businesses leads to increased youth substance abuse AND use of cannabis at younger ages.
Please protect the children of Las Cruces by maintaining the 300-foot buffer zone. Denver has a required buffer distance of 1000-ft between cannabis businesses and residential areas, so the 300-ft requirement here is really minimal compared to what some other cities are doing. Please do not prioritize economic incentives over the health and well-being of the children in our community. When there are increased numbers of cannabis retailers, children and adolescents will believe that cannabis is less harmful for them to use. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0306460322003185Las Cruces already has over 100 registrations for cannabis businesses. The argument that there are not enough locations for cannabis businesses is clearly not true.If you remove the 300-foot cannabis buffer, there are going to be more children in Las Cruces who start using drugs at earlier ages. According to the Journal of the American Medical Association, cannabis usage in adolescence negatively impacts brain development. https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamapsychiatry/fullarticle/2781289
|Please take action if these issues are important to you. We have to be involved if we want to turn things around. Standing with you in solidarity,Sarah Smith|