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New cannabis retail, cultivation businesses get Planning approval
Evergreen market
The Turlock Planning Commission approved a conditional-use permit for cannabis dispensary Evergreen Market, set to open at 101 E. Glenwood Ave. (Photo contributed).

The Turlock City Planning Commission voted favorably Thursday to move ahead with two cannabis-related businesses.

By a unanimous 6-0 vote, the commission approved a conditional-use permit for Evergreen Market, which would become the city’s fourth cannabis dispensary under a five-year pilot program, at 101 E. Glenwood Ave.

By an identical 6-0 margin, the commission voted to recommend that the city council approve a development agreement for Flavor Farms Turlock, a cannabis cultivation, manufacturing and distribution business that would occupy space at 680 D St.

“I see there’s opportunity to be had for revenue,” said Planning Commissioner Matthew Davis. “There’s a large learning curve … and the city and the staff have been really good helping us to understand the applications of that.

“Overall, if we look at the way the dispensaries appear to be operating, talking to law enforcement, we haven’t had any issues and I’m very thankful for that.”

Evergreen Market, which operates five cannabis retail outlets in the greater Seattle area but cannot expand in Washington because of state laws, began eyeing California in 2019. An agreement to lease property at 693 N. Golden State Blvd. fell through, and a search for a new site ensued. Paperwork delays, city staff turnover, the COVID-19 pandemic, and the need to restart the background-check process (because so much time had passed since the first background checks were completed) made this a lengthier process than those faced by Firehouse Cannabis Dispensary, 1601 W. Main St., and Perfect Union Weed Dispensary, 2500 N. Golden State Blvd.

National Health Center is Turlock’s other dispensary and is slated to open soon, according to the city.

One small point of contention regarding Evergreen Market’s occupancy focused upon two taco trucks that currently operate in the parking lot at 101 E. Glenwood Ave. 

According to the conditions of approval, the taco trucks — permitted through the end of the year — may continue to operate there until Evergreen opens for business. Not wanting to disrupt a small business, Evergreen proposed that the vendors be allowed to operate until 2024, regardless of when Evergreen opens its doors.

The commissioners, fearing that customers waiting for their food orders, would create unnecessary loitering near the dispensary, and denied the request.

Flavor Farms Turlock would occupy a nearly 50,000-square-foot facility, though not all that square footage would be used for cultivation. The public benefit amount for the cultivation and manufacturing portions of the facility would be $10 per square foot — per year — while the public benefit from distribution would be 2.5 percent of gross receipts.

No members of the public rose to speak in favor or against either project.