Decision against cannabis stores downtown
There will be no marijuana dispensaries in downtown Modesto. The City Council made that decision late Tuesday night after listening to multiple concerns, including from Downtown Modesto Partnership CEO Josh Bridegroom. Representatives from the Modesto Chamber of Commerce and Downtown Improvement District joined Bridegroom in opposing a proposal that could have allowed up to three retail cannabis stores downtown. Marijuana outlets are “an untested thing. We have not had a chance to see how they will perform,” Bridegroom told the council. He also stressed that downtown has the largest concentration of jobs in the region and is the community’s hub for culture, fine dining and entertainment. “Given all the unknowns with the dispensing of this drug for recreational purposes, we do not think it wise to have the city’s civic center be a testing ground,” Bridegroom wrote in a letter to the council. City leaders did agree to allow up to 10 marijuana dispensaries across the city, with specific limits on how close they can be to homes, schools, day care facilities and youth centers.