Dry Creek Rancheria tribe files cannabis application with Sonoma County

Outdoor cannabis grow in the Mayacamas Mountains, Sonoma County,  Sept. 22, 2021. (CHRISTIAN KALLEN/SONOMA INDEX-TRIBUNE)
Outdoor cannabis grow in the Mayacamas Mountains, Sonoma County,  Sept. 22, 2021. (CHRISTIAN KALLEN/SONOMA INDEX-TRIBUNE)

Outdoor cannabis grow in the Mayacamas Mountains, Sonoma County, Sept. 22, 2021. (CHRISTIAN KALLEN/SONOMA INDEX-TRIBUNE) The tribal government that agreed this past spring to delay its pursuit of a casino in south Petaluma has found another use for a portion of its land: cannabis.

The Dry Creek Rancheria Band of Pomo Indians has filed an application with Sonoma County to grow nearly 1,000 cannabis plants outdoors along the southernmost stretch of Petaluma Boulevard South, at the southeast corner of Highway 101 and Kastania Road.

The proposed operation, which would include large water storage tanks and involve dozens of employee trips per day, would be isolated to a 29-acre portion of the tribe’s 277 acres between Highway 101 and the Petaluma River.

The project still must be approved by county planners, but it has drawn positive remarks from area leaders who have long sought to limit casino activity in Sonoma County. Petaluma City Council member Mike Healy said he has some questions about the well that the tribe plans to use as a water source, but otherwise had few complaints.

“Bigger picture, though, this would allow the tribe to get some economic return on its property without a casino,” said Healy, the council’s senior incumbent.

Phone messages left with tribal headquarters, and with a contact listed on the tribe’s application, were not returned.

The tribe’s application, filed in early August, came three months after leaders agreed to extend an accord with the county that ensures no casino will be built on the property before Dec. 31, […]

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