Friday, July 19, 2024

Mendocino County Code Enforcement Takes Action on Illegal Cannabis Cultivation in Redwood Valley


The following is a press release issued by the County of Mendocino:

One of the hoop houses presented by proponents of the Redwood Valley Cannabis Prohibition Zone [Picture from the County of Mendocino website]

During the July 25th, 2023, Board of Supervisors meeting, a Redwood Valley Cannabis Prohibition District was considered. Although the Board denied establishment of the Prohibition District, unanimous direction was provided to the Mendocino County Code Enforcement Division to assign all of its available resources to address illegal cannabis cultivation within the Redwood Valley area. The purpose of this direction was to address cannabis-related nuisances in the area as demonstrated by numerous constituent complaints of nuisance odor and activities.

As a result of the Board’s direction, the Code Enforcement Division has proceeded with identifying multiple properties within Redwood Valley as potential non-permitted cultivation sites, including but not limited to the use of aerial imagery. Code Enforcement will be completing thorough investigations to assess for illegal cannabis cultivation and its related infrastructure. While in the field, Code Enforcement officers will also be actively seeking to identify additional unpermitted cultivation sites to include in this directed effort.

Code Enforcement is seeking voluntary compliance by responsible parties to abate all illegal cannabis cultivation in violation of Mendocino County Code (MCC) Chapter 10A.17 and obtain appropriate building permits to address non-permitted infrastructure associated with cannabis cultivation. If voluntary compliance is not achieved, Code Enforcement will elevate enforcement action on non-compliant sites.

It should be noted that many properties located with Redwood Valley are zoned RR (Rural Residential) 1 (RR1) and do not qualify for cultivation beyond the personal adult use exemption. However, it should also be noted that for the adult use exemption, the use must also be in compliance of MCC section 10A.17.040 to meet all required setbacks.

A copy of the 10A.17 Ordinance can be located at:

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The Mendocino County community is highly encouraged to review the above noted ordinance to ensure their properties are in compliance.

For any questions or concerns, community members can reach out to the Code Enforcement Division at: (707) 234-6669 or email at: codeenforcement@mendocinocounty.org

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  1. Good job! Weed out the illegal growers so they either comply with the law or find another line of work! It’s not fair to the good growers that obey the regulations and pay their taxes and certification fees.

  2. How many wine grapes can someone grow and sell without getting in trouble? I’m genuinely asking. Can someone grow and produce small batches of grape wine and sell it without getting in trouble? I’m genuinely curious and really wish the winos and stoners would get together and plan a great and glorious future for our otherwise industry poor county.
    As a frequent purchaser of cannabis from the local stores , I see people from the bay area weed shopping every weekend. I think they make the drive for MENDO’s weed! This could help us! Stop being afraid of the devils lettuce and start worrying about the perverted realtors and cops in town!

    • Vineyards Too Then: Cannabis and Vineyards cannot legally be grown on the same parcels nor by the same companies or corporations. Vineyard owners will lose Federal selling licenses if they are caught growing Cannabis and Vineyards under the same company and/or on the same parcels. Vineyard owners would gladly switch to Cannabis but they would have to get out of the Vineyard industry all together. All or nothing. The County permitting ordinance restricts legal cannabis grow sites to 10K Sqft. It is not profitable to sell legal cannabis in such low volumes. Keep in mind this cap was demanded for by the public outcry back in 2021. The fear at the time was that large Corporations would saturate and move ‘small farmers’ out of the business. Ironically, there is a blossoming of black market cannabis sites, including in Redwood Valley, where many cannabis farmers have their business in both illegal and legal cannabis markets. The devil’s lettuce is all good but their is too many bad faith / disillusioned actors in the community to make this problem conclude itself.

        • I worked with and knew the former Cannabis Director. My wife also worked in the cannabis division of the county.This is pretty much spot on in terms of the facts. It is illegal for Vineyards and Cannabis to be grown on the same parcels. Vineyards can be at risk of losing a federally regulated sellers license if they are caught with cannabis mixing with vineyard business. Here is the exact verbage for sqft limits; “Microbusiness” means at least three of the following commercial cannabis activities: (1) cultivation of cannabis on an area 10,000 square feet or less,”

          It is in the Muni code for Mendocino. It’s public knowledge.

          • The former Cannabis director gave out so much false information you might not want to quote her anymore, she got caught lying to the BOS about training materials she never had. Shortly after she wasn’t working there anymore.
            The Mendocino County Cannabis department has botched the whole permitting program, losing paperwork and not even able to answer the phone, so also not a solid reference.
            There is a big difference between a winery that sells alcohol, and a person that grows a vineyard and sells the grapes to a winery.
            You can grow grapes and weed on the same parcel.

            • Perhaps; I believe you have to have separate water sources so they cannot be using the same wells or sources of water, plus the fact of the matter is that cannabis legally can only be harvested at 10K sqft maximum. It isn’t sustainable. This is why many farmers still run black market farms alongside legal farms. I’m not talking about Nevedal. The one before her was a guy named Sean. The Cannabis ordinance in Mendo is keeping the Cannabis dept in a tail spin since there was previously conflicting clauses between the state and the county ordiannce plus the county did a negative declaration in the EIR which left many farmers on there own to get their own EIRs. Many spots where cannabis is grown is never going to pass for a state permit. More than 2/3rds of the ongoing county permits are still not in compliance or they have incomplete documents submitted. For every legal farm there is two or three black market farms in Mendo. The ordinance is the problem my friend and there are some inconvenient truths the farmers may not be ready for coming down the pipe.

              • Sean Connel definitely doesn’t have credibility, he left mendo and screwed over Trinity county cannabis farmers creating a real mess up there.
                How do you know anything about 2/3rds of the county applications?
                The county lost most of the applications and made everyone resubmit.
                You are just regurgitating excuses from the Mendocino county government.
                I’m glad your wife doesn’t work there anymore she sounds like part if the problem

                • Do all your answers involved trash talking every person who failed under a broken ordinance? Should the county’s extensive turn-over be a clue to you that this county is ungovernable? I will agree to disagree with you on the grounds that the last two directors were the cause of all of Mendo’s Cannabis problems. Best of luck to your cause.

                  • I will keep trash talking people who were horrible at their job.
                    You proved it by spreading false information you learned from those people.

                    • Trash talking is the basis of pettiness especially if you aren’t throwing your own reputation into in the chaos which is the Mendo’s gov’t. Otherwise please be a proactive member of society and not the problem. Right now you sound petty and a reflection of the problem in Mendocino.

                    • I guess you only like to trash talk cannabis farmers. Way out of line here trash talking mendocino county government….

                    • You misguided soul. I don’t think you care to hear about the real problems in this gov’t. You would like to blame a boogeyman/woman like Nevedal or Sean so you don’t have to think about the complexity of the problem. Mendocino’s gov’t is a reflection of the people in the community. Its a group effort. There is plenty of criticism of the gov’t’s staff (which is under paid, under staffed, and often work two jobs) yet why is leadership bodies (like the BOS) that made the ordinance in the first place under the same critique or perhaps the voters that insist on keeping the ordinance in place? The people vote for these elected leaders and lobby these officials which create the ordinance. The high turn over in the county isn’t just incompetent staff but also poor policy and poor leadership.

                    • You call me misguided
                      You were the one giving our false Information like it was facts
                      I actually understand the situation more then you.

                    • Anyone who trash talks and scapegoats their problems is a bad faith actor. Why are you not working for the county if you know so much? All you did was try to discredit me and two former directors. I notice if you don’t agree you trash talk the other. You sound like an ain’t shit type of person to me. At least the people you discredit actual did their time in the county because if you knew so much than you would see the county isn’t exactly a great place to work given the poor leadership and policies of the community including the bad ordinance.

                  • I don’t have time to argue with you. I will go back to growing grapes and cannabis legally on the same parcel. You can continue calling people names on here and spreading misinformation all you want


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MendoFever Staff
MendoFever Staff
Editor's Note: Whenever an article's byline reads "MendoFever Staff", the contents of that article were not composed by any of our reporters. Types of writing that will be attributed to "MendoFever Staff" include press releases, letters to the editor, op-eds, obituaries— essentially writing that is not produced by a reporter.

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