BY ALLISON LEVITSKY
Daily Post Staff Writer
Cannabis retailers, start your engines: today is the first day that the city of Mountain View is accepting applications to open marijuana shops in town.
Hopeful marijuana vendors have from 8 a.m. today (Dec. 3) until Feb. 1 at 4 p.m. to submit their applications.
The city will issue permits to up to two retail stores and two non-retail businesses, such as companies that manufacture marijuana products.
Storefront shops are allowed in retail shopping centers, downtown, on El Camino Real and in the North Bayshore and San Antonio neighborhoods. Non-storefront businesses are allowed on El Camino and North Bayshore.
The businesses have to be at least 600 feet from schools and 250 feet away from child care centers, unless it’s separated by Highways 85 or 237 or Central Expressway.
Applications must include a list of owners along with contact information and each owner’s percentage of the business.
Other requirements include background checks with the Mountain View police, a written business description and evidence of an applicant’s legal right to occupy a commercial space.
In March, the city will randomly select two qualified retail applications and two qualified non-retail applications by assigning lottery-style rankings to each application.
The top two in each category will be allowed to submit a planning application by May.
If an application is withdrawn or denied, the city will give the next highest-ranked applicant the chance to submit a planning application.
Mountain View voters approved a 9% sales tax on marijuana last month.
The stores won’t be allowed to advertise their products outside, and merchandise won’t be visible through the windows. To get past the stores’ waiting room-style lobbies, patrons will have to scan their IDs to prove they’re over 21.
As in the rest of the state, it remains illegal in Mountain View to use marijuana in public or for anyone under 21 to use it.
Mountain View will be the only city between San Jose and San Francisco to allow pot shops. However, voters in both San Carlos and Redwood City approved marijuana sales taxes of up to 10% last month, in case either city allows pot stores in the future.