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Hemp Field

County Temporarily Suspends Expansion of Industrial Hemp Production

Author: Martin Settevendemie: Agricultural Commissioner/Sealer
Date: 6/24/2019 11:41:54 AM

The Board of Supervisors adopted a temporary moratorium on the production of industrial hemp in all unincorporated areas of the county, with limited exemptions.


Last week, the County of San Luis Obispo Board of Supervisors adopted an urgency ordinance establishing a temporary moratorium on the production of industrial hemp in all unincorporated areas of the county, with limited exemptions.

On Tuesday, June 18, the Board held a three-hour public hearing and listened to testimony from staff and members of the public. Staff outlined the current regulatory structure specific to industrial hemp, concerns raised by the community, and options for implementing a permanent ordinance.

After a lengthy discussion, the Board voted 4 to 1 to adopt the temporary suspension of industrial hemp production with limited exemptions for previously registered commercial operations and qualifying established agricultural research institutions. The suspension will remain in place for an initial period of 45 days. Within that time, the Board can decide to extend the moratorium for a total of one year. Any further extension would be limited to a total of two years from original date of adoption (June 18, 2019).

A hearing for the Board to consider extending the moratorium beyond the initial 45 days is set for July 16, 2019 in the Board of Supervisors chamber located at 1055 Monterey Street, San Luis Obispo. The Board can also lift the moratorium by a majority vote at any time.

Note, State and Federal law may also impose additional limitations on industrial hemp cultivation by established agricultural research institutions separate and apart from the urgency ordinance.

Download and read the staff report and other materials provided to the Board and watch or listen to the three-hour discussion from this week’s Board of Supervisors meeting.