Despite an attempt by voters to keep the two retail worlds apart, alcohol and marijuana are colliding in the San Diego region. In Chula Vista, alcohol store owners have been given an advantage in the marijuana business application process over some competitors.
In La Mesa last year, Laith Shoshani, a liquor store owner, paid a $600 citation for hosting Discount Budz. That dispensary later reopened at the same address, according to city zoning complaint records.
Shoshani was also the target of two Americans with Disabilities Act lawsuits in 2017, as were other NMA members. A disabled man complained that he wanted to buy marijuana from an illegal dispensary but couldn’t get his wheelchair through the door. Several of those cases were dropped after the landlord cut the man a check outside the courtroom.
Another of those disabilities lawsuits was aimed at John Moses, whose Spring Valley property is home to two businesses. One half is occupied by Club 64, an unlicensed dispensary, open 24 hours a day. The other belongs to Bancroft Liquor.
Dana Stevens, an alcohol- and drug-abuse preventionist whose El Cajon-based organization, CASA, offers certified alcohol-server training courses, said she’s fielded about a dozen phone calls as of late by convenience and liquor store owners who want to know if they can sell marijuana products in their shops. Occasionally, she said, an unlicensed dispensary will offer the landlord a significantly higher-than-normal rent and the landlord will take the deal, despite the risks involved.
“They know that the cost of any fine is really just a cost of doing business,” she said.
hfn editors note: actually this is not news to anyone with eyes to see or ears to hear. Look all around this garrison town, lawyer liars run this place like the gangsters they are. And we let them, us the citizens…