“If someone is caught renting a facility… we fine them”
Fortuna will now fine residents $1,000 each day for growing commercial cannabis, an effort to further discourage pot growers after they have been “warned and approached” by the city’s police department.
Residents who receive the new citations will also be guilty of a misdemeanor, but won’t be prosecuted for the crime. While commercial cultivation is legal in Humboldt County, Fortuna officials have been steadfast in trying to keep it out of city limits.
The new law accompanies a larger city policy that allows the local government to hand out citations and fines to residents for certain code violations, rather than prosecuting those offenses through the court system. The council unanimously approved both ordinances on Monday.
Councilmember Dean Glaser, who has been an extreme critic of marijuana legalization, made sure with staff that the council would be able to raise the daily fine amount past $1,000 if necessary.
“If someone is caught renting a facility… we fine them, but unfortunately, they can just pick up and leave,” Glaser warned. He asked if the city could then seek aid from law enforcement to “bust them.”
Ryan Plotz, the city’s attorney, clarified that both landlords and tenants could separately receive citations under the new ordinance.
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