South Sacramento business owners clash over proposed marijuana dispensary

SACRAMENTO — A conflict over marijuana is heating up as two small business owners battle it out over a proposed new marijuana dispensary in a South Sacramento neighborhood.

Diamond House Detox is a rehab center that treats dozens of drug addicts every day.

“They come here because they think it’s a safe place to get treatment,” said Vicky Magobet, chief executive of Diamond House Detox.

The outpatient facility has been operating along Bruceville Road since last February, but now they may find a new neighbor in a vacant storefront next door: a cannabis dispensary.

“I’m very worried about my customers,” Magobet said.

The concern is that patients like “Hawthorne” will be tempted to buy marijuana.

“When I see anything or know something might be in my hands, I get triggered,” Hawthorne said. “I even get excited just seeing a green leaf.”

La Krisha Young is the owner of the proposed cannabis store called Culture. She spent years working her way through the city’s marijuana licensing process and signed a lease for the site months before the drug rehab clinic opened.

“We actually got there first,” she said.

She is a participant in Sacramento’s CORE program, which provides cannabis dispensary licenses to people whose families have been negatively affected by the war on drugs.

“This should change my life, my children’s lives for generations, and the community as a whole,” Yang said.

She said trying to get a permit in another place would take too much time.

“It’s not an easily repeatable process,” Yang said.

As a compromise, she even offered to remove marijuana references from her marketing.

“I don’t agree with anything that has to do with the marijuana logo, the badge, my signage or my name,” Yang said.

Now, it’s up to Sacramento city leaders to decide the drug dispute.

“Can the city put it next to the high school?” Magobett asked. “I doubt they will, so I think we should be in the same category.”

Dozens of people have testified for and against the issue at previous public meetings. The final appeal is scheduled to be heard at the Sacramento City Council meeting next Tuesday.

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