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Permit sought for Dayton-area pot grow

In this April 12, 2018,  photo, a marijuana plant awaits transplanting at the Hollingsworth Cannabis Company near Shelton, Wash. (Ted S. Warren / Associated Press)
In this April 12, 2018, photo, a marijuana plant awaits transplanting at the Hollingsworth Cannabis Company near Shelton, Wash. (Ted S. Warren / Associated Press)
By Andy Porter Walla Walla Union-Bulletin

DAYTON – What could be Columbia County’s first cannabis growing operation is scheduled for a public hearing next week.

The hearing for Cobalt Cannabis Co. will be at 1 p.m. Monday in the Columbia County Courthouse, 341 E. Main St., in Dayton.

The applicant, Meri C. Bush of Walla Walla, is seeking a conditional-use permit to grow marijuana at a farm site on Poulson Road, about 9 miles northeast of Dayton. Bush has been licensed by the state Liquor and Cannabis Board but must obtain a conditional-use permit to comply with county zoning regulations.

According to the application, recreational cannabis would be grown and packaged at the location for transport off site for retail sale. The operation would use existing structures on the property with the only new improvement a 60-foot by 60-foot, fenced, outdoor grow area.

Among comments received by the county Planning and Building Department on the application were one from county resident and farmer Bob Hutchens expressing concern over who might be held liable if drift from crop spraying damages the marijuana crop. Another from county resident Pearl Dennis asked if smell from the growing cannabis plants might be an issue for neighboring homes.

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