San Luis Obispo will soon be home to adult-use marijuana dispensaries. But first, the city has to narrow down the applicants to a maximum of three businesses that will get to open a storefront.
The city is currently reviewing nine applications for retail cannabis stores, one for a microbusiness and two for delivery services under criteria established by the City Council, which favors local operators with an established prior history in the licensed medical marijuana industry.
The names of the groups that submitted licensing requests have been released publicly at the request of The Tribune.
Each prospective business falls within the city’s established zones for cannabis. Retail applicants are seeking permitting for locations along South Higuera and the 2000 block of Broad Street.
Considerations of applications include: points for prospective owners who earn at or below the median household, employ local labor and buy local supplies, and for those who contribute more than $1,000 per month to community programs such as park cleanups and donations to youth programs, along with other criteria. Business applicants aren’t allowed to have prior convictions or felonies.
Successful applicants will likely be notified in March, before a background check kicks in, according to Charlene Rosales, the city’s economic development manager. Then how soon businesses will be operating could depend on any renovations needed to their facilities and other factors.
“Dispensaries should be up and running by the end of the year,” said Michael Codron, the city’s community development director.
Here’s a look at the nine retail store applications:
HOLLISTER SLO (Native Bliss)
Location: 207 Higuera St.
Primary applicant: Dr. Kirk Azevedo
About the business: Azevedo, a chiropractor, has specialized in providing pain relief for patients without the use of opioids. He began cultivating medical marijuana under Proposition 2015 after buying property in San Luis Obispo County.
SLO CAL ROOTS
Location: 3535 S. Higuera St.
Primary applicant: Austen Connella
About the business: The business is made up of “longstanding local San Luis Obispo County” residents. SLO Cal Roots has operated an organic cannabis farm in SLO County, and Connella attended Atascadero High School. The business proposes an overhaul and renovation of the building.
805 BEACH BREAKS
Location: 2410 Broad St.
Primary applicant: Daniel Fried
About the business: The Beach Breaks team is comprised of business owners “from the Central Coast” who have operated cannabis businesses and non-cannabis business for a decade. 805 Beach Breaks operates a cannabis retail store currently in Grover Beach.
MOM SLO (Megan’s Organic Market)
Location: 280 Higuera St. with a second location at 300 Higuera St.
Primary applicant: Megan Souza
About the business: Megan’s Organic Market established its medical marijuana delivery services in 2013. Before that, MOM started organically cultivating cannabis in 2010. Megan Souza is a Morro Bay High School graduate, and her partner Eric Powers has served on multiple boards of directors of local nonprofits and operated a hemp store in Morro Bay.
NATURAL HEALING CENTER
Location: 2640 Broad St.
Primary applicant: Helios Dayspring
About the business: Dayspring, president of Natural Healing Center, has 18 cultivation properties in San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties, as well as 66 valid cannabis licenses and 145 pending. The business owns a retail store in Grover Beach and is moving into the cannabis tourism industry.
Location: 309 and 311 Higuera St.
Primary applicant: Steven Matthew White
About the business: The applicant operates multiple marijuana dispensaries nationwide.
COASTAL RETAIL SLO
Location: 2504 Broad St.
Primary applicant: Malante Hayworth (no additional information was provided)
Location: 2550 Broad St. (no additional information was provided)
▪ Here’s a look at the microbusiness and delivery service applicants:
ELEMENT 7 SAN LUIS OBISPO (distributing and manufacturing)
Location: Not identified
Primary applicant: Robert “Bobby” Devito
About the business: The core management teams owns and operates more than 1,000 retail stores in the dry cleaning, video and food services industries. The business proposes donating at least $50,000 to local charities and committing over 7,000 hours of community service.
LAB TESTED SLO (delivery)
Location: 3563 Sueldo Road, Suite R
Primary applicant: Nathaniel Heintz-Hargitt
COASTAL DELIVERY SLO (delivery)
Location: 747 Woodbridge St.
Primary applicant: Malante Hayworth