LA City Council Votes to Outlaw Medical Marijuana Dispensaries
The Los Angeles City Council voted unanimously today to outlaw medical marijuana dispensaries in the city, but they also approved a measure that could allow approximately 180 storefronts to remain open under stricter guidelines.
According to the Associated Press, the ban will go into effect 30 days after official approval by Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, who has voiced his support for the measure. The city will inform all existing dispensaries, which could total over 900.
“The city has fumbled with its medical marijuana laws for years,” the AP writes, “trying to provide safe and affordable access to the drug for legitimate patients while addressing worries by neighborhood groups that streets were being overrun by dispensaries and pot users.”
Even so, the ban won’t be absolute. The LA Weekly has clarified that “nonprofit collectives of up to three people who want to grow and share pot for the medically ill behind closed doors” will still be able to do so.
State voters approved the use of medical marijuana in 1996, provided patients were verified and did not get relief of pain or other symptoms from regular prescription medication. Currently, the California Supreme Court is reviewing cases against similar bans, as well as regulation of pot dispensaries.
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