‘Marijuana War’ Pits Struggling City Against Wealthier Neighbors in San Gabriel Valley

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Nancy Fang, left, Zig Jiang, middle, and Lily Chan, right, prepare fliers to distribute against the approval of future marijuana production sites. (Credit: Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times)

Nancy Fang, left, Zig Jiang, middle, and Lily Chan, right, prepare fliers to distribute against the approval of future marijuana production sites. (Credit: Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times)

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The men and women collecting petition signatures outside Metro Super Market in Temple City warned of a marijuana takeover and greedy politicians eager to speed it along. They accused Andre Quintero, the mayor of El Monte, of wanting to make the San Gabriel Valley famous as a cannabis hub.

Quintero has backed a sprawling marijuana facility in El Monte as the start of a larger effort to make cannabis an economic engine for a working-class, predominantly Latino city that has long suffered from financial woes. He also sees marijuana cultivation as a way of boosting the city’s standing.

“I’ll look at the package and it will say ‘Made in El Monte,’ and I’ll smile,” he said.

But the city’s push into marijuana is facing an extreme backlash from its more well-heeled neighbors in the San Gabriel Valley, who fear cultivation will bring crime and blight.

Read the full story on LATimes.com.

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