Lake Elsinore City Council discusses 45-day ‘pause’ of new applications relating to cannabis uses

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Staff discusses Cannabis Kingdom’s proposed project that would add an additional 2,497 square feet of space to their existing location during the Lake Elsinore City Council meeting Tuesday, Aug. 25. Valley News/Courtesy photo

An update on the effectiveness of the street light conversion program was presented at the Lake Elsinore City Council meeting Tuesday, Aug. 25; the program’s history dates back to 2016.

The acquisition process began June 4, 2018, as a cost of $3,104,859.18. There were 3,659 lamps acquired.

The city converted all of the street lights that Lake Elsinore currently owns. The street lights which were not converted are owned by Southern California Edison; the wood poles are still Edison owned, according to city staff.

It totals 3,787 lamps on 3,735 light poles, including the 128 city-owned streetlights.

The project started Oct. 7, 2019, and the project was completed May 11, 2020.

Staff reported that the projected savings on the electric bill annually is $382,745, or a 65% decrease in annual utility expenses.

Past electric cost was $587,179.84 annually.

Residents can report a street light outage on the mobile app Alert LE, and according to staff, the turnaround time to fix the problem is short, usually within 24 hours.

Railroad Canyon Road’s widening project was a part of the citywide slurry seal project on pavement rehabilitation. The road was widened from four to six lanes; three lanes in each direction from Grape Street to Canyon Hills Road. Pavement rehabilitation took place from Grape Street to city limits east of Canyon Hills Road.

The project duration occurred from January to July 2019.

Summerhill Drive was also rehabilitated from Railroad Canyon Road to Canyon Estates Drive; project duration occurred from July 15-30, 2019.

Several more streets were a part of the pavement rehabilitation project.

The item that was voted on during the Aug. 25 city council meeting was the citywide slurry project, a $1.3 million average investment project into mostly local residential streets.

The project is broken up into four areas: Area A, which is primarily within Alberhill Ranch; Area B, which encompasses Alberhill Ranch South and McVicker Canyon; Area C, which encompasses Tuscany Hills area and has not had pavement treatment since constructed and Area D, which consists of Diamond Drive.

These projects total about 7.2 million square feet of pavement rehabilitation since 2018.

The citywide slurry seal is projected to start in September and should be completed within two and a half months.

A public hearing request was brought to the council’s attention during the meeting; a request by Cannabis Kingdom LLC to modify a previously-approved conditional use permit to establish an 8,099-square-foot cannabis facility with ancillary functions located within an existing building.

The city council approved Cannabis Kingdom’s planning application back in December 2018.

The proposed project would modify an existing development and conditional use permit approved to establish a 5,602-square-foot cannabis facility at 31875 Corydon, Suite 120, by adding an additional 2,497 square feet of space in 31881 Corydon, Suite 160, according to staff.

Both units are within the same complex; the new unit would be primarily for retail sales on the bottom floor, with upstairs offices, breakroom, restroom and accessories, according to staff.

Staff supported and recommended that the council adopt a resolution approving a modification to the development agreement, and also adopt a resolution approving a modification to the conditional use permit.

The motion passed unanimously.

On Aug. 11, the city council included an agenda item related to cannabis related land uses and entitlements.

At the conclusion of that meeting, the city council unanimously adopted a 45-day moratorium by way of an urgency ordinance limiting or temporarily suspending any new applications related to cannabis uses, according to staff.

The item at the Aug. 25 city council meeting was to confirm the adoption of that urgency ordinance, it took effect immediately Aug. 11, according to staff.

Based on concerns relating to public safety, health and welfare from a potential increase of cannabis related uses, it was decided that the moratorium was necessary.

Mayor Brian Tisdale said that the 45-day moratorium was more of a pause than a permanent action.

To find out more about the discussion regarding the moratorium decision that was put in place, or the other agenda items, visit http://lake-elsinore.granicus.com/MediaPlayer.php?view_id=7&clip_id=1422.

Lexington Howe can be reached by email at lhowe@reedermedia.com.