Contact Us

Pot and First Amendment rights spice Trinidad City Council

TRINIDAD — A sometimes raucous city council meeting covered a lot of business during the regular session, Tuesday, July 7, with the city finding itself taken to task by a sometimes angry public during the public comment time in the agenda. With a 7-0 vote, the city approved a new marijuana business. CODA Signature will be doing business at 1105 Constitution, where the two owners will be producing retail marijuana and medical infused-products. The license application was approved with the condition that Alan Grindeland and Elizabeth Cook produce information they left off of their city application, but included on their state application for license. Grindeland told the council Trinidad was in the right location for what his business plan called for. He expects to employ about 100 workers by the end of the year. “We expect the feds will legalize marijuana sometime in the near future and Trinidad is located close to the New Mexico border.” Cook is a chocolatier, trained in Europe in the art of making chocolate. Her skill will be used to manufacture infused products. Stephen Haemer took his turn to speak to the council

about conditions the handicapped in wheelchairs face when encountering outside dining as they move on the city’s sidewalks. He wanted to know why the city wasn’t enforcing code on how dining chairs were placed on the sidewalks outside the downtown cafes. Adding sarcasm to his speech, he aroused the ire of Mayor Reorda and a back and forth exchange started. Mayor Reorda told Haemer his time was up and a member of the audience jumped into the fray saying the city was violating Haemer’s first amendment rights. The mayor instructed the police to escort the audience member from the council chambers. During Haemer’s talk, the firing of Code Enforcement Officer Chris Kelly over signage came up. “He quit,” said Mayor Reorda. Council Member Torres said that the signage for Peaceful Herbs in downtown Trinidad was good. “The big peace sign draws people off of the highway. That’s what we need; is to get people off the highway and into town. I think we need to revisit our sign codes.” In other business, the city council voted to consider a Mutual Aid Agreement between Raton, New Mexico and Trinidad, for fire protection. The meeting adjourned at 9 pm.