The Latest | Southern California breaking news and trends

Former Orange official moonlights as landlord to Anaheim medical marijuana dispensary

A screenshot of David Rudat from his page
A screenshot of David Rudat from his page

A former city manager for the city of Orange, who has since moved on to become Stockton’s fire chief, is still keeping the flame alive in Southern California -- as a landlord and supplier in the medical marijuana business.

David Rudat, who once served as Orange’s top executive, was made Stockton’s interim fire chief last year. Around that time he also became CFO of GreenGro Technologies, a Westminster company that sells hydroponic growing equipment commonly used to grow marijuana, the Orange County Register discovered earlier this month.

Today the Register took the story up a notch, reporting that Rudat also leases warehouse space at 1100 Orangefair Lane in Anaheim to a medical pot dispensary called the Anaheim Medical Co-op. There card-carrying members can buy “Poison Bubba,” “Dutch Treat” or “LA Confidential” for $55 an eighth.

The Stockton Record -- which calls Rudat a “budding entrepreneur” -- recently talked to the fire chief about GreenGro, and he told them he spends “four or five hours a month” working on company business. (Rudat started out as CEO there in February 2011, but took the CFO spot after Stockton hired him.) He said his goal at GreenGro is to move the company away from just marijuana production -- and he added that he doesn’t smoke weed.

Rudat’s bosses in Stockton say they don’t mind his extracurricular activities, but city officials in Anaheim say they do. The city enacted a ban on pot dispensaries in 2007, but its “cease and desist” orders have been ignored. When it comes to selling medical marijuana, the details on what’s legal are currently lost in the purple haze of conflicting state and federal laws.

“Yeah, it’s controversial, but I hear there’s a lot of benefit,” Rudat told the Register. “Some people will castigate me for doing this, others will say, ‘hooray.’”