REDDING Calif. - Recreational marijuana dispensaries are just starting to become a part of the culture in Redding.
Synergy was the first shop to open within the city, but it's a far cry from what you might expect.
"Shattering the negative stereotypes that have plagued this industry for so long and some of them quite frankly was justified at one point but I think we are beyond that,” said Owner of Synergy in Redding Jamie Garzot.
Instead of focusing on products new businesses now focus on experience and customer service and helping newcomers to the industry.
"You know not everyone is just sitting back and just a bunch of lazy hippies we are business owners. We are marathon runners. We are active members of the community," said some employees at Synergy.
"There is no one demographic that we can profile as a cannabis consumer, which is kind of exciting," Garzot said. "It is not stereotypical.”
For new customers, shattering stereotypes makes all the difference.
"It’s clean and it is high end,"a said a customer visiting the store for the first time. "And it is welcoming and I am very happy to have come here and I will be recommending it to all of my friends.”
Just like some other high-end other service industry businesses, while not required, tipping is appreciated.
“It's not expected, it is always appreciated," said the employees. "You know to tip your bartender, so [it's a] tip your budtender type of thing. And we never expect anything. We are there to help you and that is our main purpose.”
Synergy hopes other dispensaries planning to open in Redding continue the trend.
“[It is] part of my obligation in being here and this is a privilege is to shatter some stereotypes,” Garzot said.
A new tax is also being proposed by the city aims to impact this business and the others that are soon going to open.
The tax breaks down into three parts, first tax that is proposed at three dollars per square foot for specifically cultivation area.
It also would be a 3 percent tax manufacturing, processing, laboratory testing, storage and distribution facilities.
The final element would be a 5 percent tax on retail spaces.
Regardless of tax consumers, those we spoke to today say that they are just glad the city is moving in the right direction.
“I just think that this is in this kind of store shows that Redding wants to grow and wants to expand beyond what it has done historically,” Garzot said.
This ballot measure will go to the votes this election cycle on Nov. 6.
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