An often contentious meeting to discuss the fate of an ordinance proposed by the West Coast Patients Group ended without resolution Thursday as the Hesperia Planning Commission voted to continue the issue and conduct two workshops.


The workshop proposal was made by commissioner Bill Jensen, who railed against a state attorney general's report and criticized others not in favor of the proposal for spreading misinformation.


"I'm here to bust the ice out of this completely," Jensen said. "I don't have a document here based on scientific evidence. It's more like a witch hunt."


City Council chambers were filled with a mixture of people both in favor and against the proposal, which would define marijuana collectives and dispensaries, identify allowable locations and define a variety of restrictions.


Many people made emotional comments during a lengthy public comment period. (The Planning Commission spent three hours addressing the issue.)


"We see many, many legal problems because of this ordinance," said a man who represented the West Coast Patients Group. "You (the city of Hesperia) are treating this worse than strip clubs. You're going to make it difficult for a landlord to want to rent to us."


More supporters than opponents of the marijuana dispensary proposal appeared to be in attendance. However, several people spoke against the idea.


"I know from first-hand experience," said Pastor Randy Ponce of River of Life Church, "it would not benefit our community one bit."


"Today my brother's an invalid," Chris Green said about a sibling who started smoking marijuana at a young age. "He lives all by himself."


But several people spoke about how marijuana had helped them and others with serious medical problems.


"Medical marijuana does not lead to hard drugs," said Darlene Mattson.


"We hear the same crock," said Mattson's husband Dave, who used a wheelchair when he spoke at the podium. "They're just copy and paste people," he said about city staff.


Also speaking was Leticia Pepper, an attorney who said she uses marijuana to help treat multiple sclerosis symptoms.


"It's always interesting to watch the clash of logic and facts on one side and assumption and prejudice on the other," Pepper said.


Former Hesperia City Council candidate David Holman criticized state politicians for creating confusion surrounding the issue.


"We've got this mess now because the state of California decided to meddle in a federal issue," Holman said.


Jensen requested the workshops to address a variety of issues including scientific evidence, fertilization, safety, health and potential legal issues. The public hearing will be continued to a later date.