by David Downs
The embattled City of Richmond used to be a hub of the world's finest wine - until alcohol prohibition choked that off. Almost a century later, the city's fine medical cannabis seemed like it would be next to succumb. Dispensaries like Seven Stars Holistic Healing Center and Ken Estes' GDP Collective won serious awards, only to be shut down or chased out of town on pain of lawsuit.
Water under the bridge, as they say.
In December, Richmond approved business permits for three dispensaries: Compassionate Care Collective DBA Greenheart; Green Remedy Collective; and Greenleaf Natural Wellness. On Wednesday, March 21, the council approved three more. With a population of 103,701, that equals one dispensary per 17,283 people, meaning Richmond residents, per capita, will have some of the best access this state can offer to some of the best medical cannabis in the world; a life-saver of a drug for those with cancer, AIDS, glaucoma, M.S., epilepsy, chronic pain and other serious problems.
By contrast, Berkeley has two dispensaries for 112,580 residents. Oakland has fully approved five for 390,734 residents.
The Richmond City Council voted 4-1 in favor of increasing dispensary permits to six. Councilman Jeff Ritterman told the Contra Costa Times' Robert Rogers, "We have been working with these six dispensaries for a couple of years now ... All are qualified, and all have done lots of hard work and also have incurred considerable expense to comply with the process."
Presumably, that means Ken Estes' award-winning GDP and Seven Stars' Pure Kush will be coming back to Richmond. Green Remedy Collective has grand-reopened first at 2928 Unit C Hilltop Mall Rd. Peep their Blackberry Kush.