Restricted use, sale of recreational cannabis in Carlsbad, NM


An ordinance regulating recreational cannabis in Carlsbad addressed the restrictions of time, place and manner, said Denise Madrid-Boyea, a lawyer for the city of Carlsbad.

Carlsbad City Council passed the ordinance on October 26.

“In order to ensure the safety of the public, especially those under the age of 21, we have promulgated this ordinance to address the issues of time, place and manner,” said Madrid-Boyea.

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“Carlsbad has zoning for all businesses and all residences and therefore we have enacted an ordinance that allows cannabis businesses in certain areas. “

New Mexico counties and municipalities have sought ways to regulate recreational cannabis after the New Mexico legislature passed the Cannabis Regulation Act, Bill 2 in a special session earlier this year. Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham signed the law days after it was passed.

Carlsbad City Attorney Denise Madrid Boyea (left) and Carlsbad Mayor Dale Janway at the Carlsbad City Council meeting on June 8, 2021. Councilors approved a zone change and annexation of a property near Callaway Drive and Cherry Lane.

“The city planning department, the legal department, the clerk’s office, the police department and the utilities department worked together to develop a comprehensive ordinance intended to provide a safe and orderly environment for recreational possession, sale, manufacture, production, cultivation, transportation and consumption of cannabis and cannabis-derived products, ”Jeff Patterson, Director of Planning for the City of Carlsbad, wrote to Councilors.

Madrid-Boyea said cannabis sales are limited to Rural Residential Districts (RR), Business Districts 1 (C-1), Business Districts 2 (C-2) and Industrial Districts (I).

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The rural residential district is intended to provide areas that will be able to accommodate agricultural, livestock and natural resource uses and very low density residential uses, until another development is appropriate, read zoning ordinances from the city of Carlsbad.

Commercial District 1 is intended to accommodate neighborhood-wide retail, office and customer services. These uses are regulated to reduce negative impacts on surrounding residential development, in accordance with zoning ordinances.

Commercial District 2 is intended to accommodate retail and commercial uses on a community and regional scale. These uses are regulated in order to be compatible with surrounding uses and existing infrastructures.

A person examining a cannabis plant.

The Industrial District is intended to accommodate manufacturing, production, research, fabrication, and heavy and / or concentrated industrial uses, according to the zoning ordinances of the City of Carlsbad.

Madrid Boyea said cannabis sales are not allowed in Residential District 1 (R-1) and Residential District 2 (R-2).

Residential District 1 is intended to accommodate moderate density single family residential development and provide land use protection for areas that develop in this manner. There must be a maximum of one primary residence per lot for residential district R-1 zoning.

Residential District 2 is intended to accommodate parks and subdivisions of single family homes, duplexes, multiple homes and higher density mobile homes and provide land use protection to areas that develop in this way. .

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“There is a provision in state law that places a boundary on two different types of locations. “One is for schools and the other is for daycares,” she said.

Madrid-Boyea said a local government under state law cannot ban a cannabis establishment above 300 feet.

She said city council added the 300-foot limit to include places of worship and public parks in the city of Carlsbad.

Greenhouse worker spraying cannabis plants

“It’s for any cannabis establishment. Consumption can only take place in an approved drinking area or a private residence, ”she said.

Cannabis sales are limited from 7:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., Monday to Sunday, and hours of use in public consumption areas are 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., Monday to Saturday, and 12:00 p.m. at 12:00 a.m. on Sunday, according to a statement from the city of Carlsbad.

Councilors approved a second amendment concerning connections to the city of Carlsbad water system.

“What we originally wrote, if someone wants to grow or produce cannabis, they will have to connect to a 10 inch waterline,” Madrid-Boyea said.

She said the council agreed to an amendment limiting water use and pipeline requirements for growing cannabis.

“You have to go to the director of utilities (Ron Myers) to make sure there is enough water,” Madrid-Boyea said.

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Patterson said an individual had applied to the City of Carlsbad’s Licensing and Permitting Department to add recreational cannabis to his municipal business registration.

“About 10 different people have called the planning service to express their interest in starting a cannabis business but have not yet applied,” said Madrid-Boyea.

Matt Kennicott, partner of the Albuquerque-based P2M Cannabis Group, said the Carlsbad ordinance appears similar to other measures adopted by other municipalities in New Mexico.

“There is always a local touch, and Carlsbad is no different. This is a new industry for almost everyone involved, and we are learning and growing together. We are happy to see that communities across the state are welcoming this nascent industry with open arms, ”he said.

Matt Kennicott of P2M Cannabis Group in Albuquerque.

P2M Cannabis Group helps potential recreational cannabis business owners with a wide range of services from finding business locations to navigating possible prescriptions, Kennicott said.

Does the prescription impact medical cannabis companies?

Madrid-Boyea said provisions were in place in HB2 to protect medical cannabis dispensaries

“Recreational cannabis producers and retailers need to set aside 25% of their inventory to meet the demands of patients with medical marijuana,” she said.

Madrid-Boyea said the Carlsbad Recreational Cannabis Ordinance relates to medical cannabis.

“And allows all existing medical cannabis establishments to remain in place and continue to operate,” she said.

Madrid-Boyea said medical cannabis dispensaries looking to add recreational cannabis could be subject to other regulations.

“For example, if they want to be licensed as cannabis curries as well or have a consumption space,” she said.

According to the Where’s Weed website, Carlsbad has four medical cannabis businesses.

Oso Cannabis at 1704 South Canal Street, Pecos Valley Production at 812 North Canal Street and 810 Mermod Street and Health Education Society at 2409 West Pierce Street.

“Where’s Weed is the comprehensive online consumption resource that connects visitors to relevant cannabis companies in the United States and Canada,” their website states.

Mike Smith can be reached at 575-628-5546 or by email at [email protected] or @ArgusMichae on Twitter.

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