Some changes in the application of the code related to cannabis this year – Redheaded Blackbelt


The Humboldt County Code Enforcement uses a variety of tools and information sources to actively identify, investigate and notice landowners who have unauthorized cannabis operations on their property. If you intend to legally grow cannabis in Humboldt County in 2019, you will need both an approved county permit and a state license. However, if you don’t have both approvals when farming, you are in violation and likely to receive notices from the code’s enforcement in 2019.

You can apply for a cultivation permit by going to the Town Planning and Construction Department. County staff are much more interested in helping growers comply through the permit process rather than taking code enforcement action on those who grow outside of local and state permit processes. If you are unsure of what is and is not permitted, please consult the Commercial and Personal Cannabis Use Orders which are available on the Planning and construction web page.

Taking into account comments from the public, landowners and lawyers on both sides of the process, this year’s opinions will be a little different from the nearly 700 cases of 2018. The Planning and Construction Department issues opinions of the Civil Code to reduce nuisance and Notice of violation and proposed administrative penalty for unauthorized cannabis operations, which often also include violations for unauthorized structures such as greenhouses, unauthorized leveling of more than 50 cubic yards and unauthorized development in watercourse management areas.

Last year’s notices were worded more generally and fines were grouped into one category. This will not be the case this year. These changes will provide code enforcement personnel with more flexibility depending on the scale and impact of an unauthorized transaction when issuing notices, as well as when resolving such cases by. through abatements, compliance agreements and appeal hearings. The bottom line is that active enforcement of unauthorized cannabis operations has continued during the rainy season and staff will resume issuing advisories in the near future.

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