Anyone who owns and operates a pot business in Oakland will have to live in the city, Oakland’s lawmakers have decided.
That’s bad news for established businesses like Dark Heart Nursery, run by a San Leandro resident who’s worked in the city for more than a decade and whose family has lived in Oakland for three generations.
“We’re sitting here with millions of dollars of investments, millions paid in taxes to the city and 60 local employees. And we’re going to have to shutter our doors,” said Dan Grace, who runs the East Oakland nursery.
The residency requirement was a last-minute addition during a contentious meeting Tuesday of the Oakland City Council as it overhauled legislation on how marijuana businesses will be regulated in the city. A faction of the council fought to change the rules approved in May that were meant to provide reparations to the people whose marijuana use was disproportionately policed in recent decades — a landmark effort to inject racial equity into regulation.