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Only half of San Luis Obispo County marijuana growers heed order to register

Greta Mart/KCBX
Commercially-sold Trainwreck, a sativa-dominant hybrid strain of cannabis.

New numbers released this week show that only about half of marijuana cultivators in San Luis Obispo County have registered their grows with the county after officials passed an ordinance requiring it. 

The San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors passed a moratorium in September in an attempt to limit the number of new marijuana cultivation sites. The ordinance required cultivators to sign up their existing sites with the county’s Planning and Building department by Nov. 18, or face possible fines and other penalties.

Growers have registered more than 400 sites since September, out of the estimated 800-1000 sites that exist in the county now. Most of the registered sites are in District 5, which includes Santa Margarita, the California Valley and parts of Templeton. County Planning Code Enforcement Supervisor Art Trinidade says that’s because that area tends to be more rural.

Those cultivators not in compliance with the ordinance will be disqualified from growing legally - whether it's commercial medical or recreational cannabis -  for the coming year and possibly longer. The urgency ordinance is set to expire next September, but could be extended into 2018.

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