Los Angeles Reins in Medical Marijuana Shops
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Los Angeles Reins in Medical Marijuana Shops
Posted by CN Staff on January 26, 2010 at 16:14:12 PT
By Daniel B. Wood, CSM Staff Writer
Source: Christian Science Monitor 
Los Angeles -- The Los Angeles City Council approved an ordinance Tuesday that will close most of the medical marijuana dispensaries set up in the city in recent years.More than 600 pot dispensaries have opened in the past 10 months. But the new law, which passed 9-3, caps the number of permitted dispensaries at 70 and provides strict rules for where they can operate.
Medical marijuana shops must now be at least 1,000 feet from churches, libraries, schools, playgrounds and other “sensitive” areas.Advocates of medical marijuana criticized the new restrictions for limiting patient access to medicine, but welcomed the ordinance as a sign that medical pot dispensaries were here to stay.“The L.A. ordinance marks an important advance for the legalization of medical marijuana in the nation's second largest city,” says Dale Gieringer, state coordinator for the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML).While the ordinance is not a model for other states, since it is tailored to the peculiarities of California law, "it is an example of how the popular demand for medical marijuana can be legally accommodated by local governments,” Mr. Gieringer adds.The ordinance is good in some ways, says Richard Lee, president of Oaksterdam University, founded in 2007 to provide training for the cannabis industry. “Cannabis should be regulated and taxed, and will generate jobs and income like other commodities,” he says.But he and others also criticized some of the bill's provisions, chief among them the restriction on where the outlets may be located, which some say will force patients to travel long distances to get their medicine.The restrictions are “onerous and will likely force the closure of almost all the dispensaries in Los Angeles,” says Kris Hermes, spokesman for Americans for Safe Access. His group is currently considering litigation over those restrictions.“Unfortunately, the city dragged its heels too long in bringing up this ordinance, then rushed to pass it without adequate study,” adds Gieringer.The new rules are in response to the flood of new dispensaries that have opened in Los Angeles in the past few years, and which have elicited a host of complaints by residents in many neighborhoods. California is one of 14 states to have legalized medical pot.The dispensaries have "had it easy since 2005, and that is now coming to an end,” David Berger, a special assistant to the city attorney's office, which drafted the ordinance, told the Associated Press. He added that while relocating is a “hardship,” the council’s rules “will be fair and equitable for everyone.”The ordinance also limits outlets' operating hours to between 10 a.m. and 8 p.m., imposes certain security measures and requires them to operate as nonprofit collectives.Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa must approve the ordinance before it can take effect.Source: Christian Science Monitor (US)Author: Daniel B. Wood, Staff Writer of The Christian Science Monitor Published: January 26, 2010Copyright: 2010 The Christian Science Publishing SocietyContact: oped csps.comWebsite: URL: Medical Marijuana Archives
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Comment #3 posted by Storm Crow on January 27, 2010 at 15:09:22 PT
How much crime???
Not THAT much! This is a bit "stale" being a week or so old, but I think it says it all. Police Chief-Marijuana Collectives Don't Attract Crime
Opinion by ASA
(January 18, 2010) in Society / Drug Law 
By Don DuncanLos Angeles Police Department Chief Charlie Beck told reporters at the Daily News that medical cannabis collectives do not attract crime, adding that “Banks are more likely to get robbed than medical marijuana dispensaries.”  (snipped)And who would know better about crime than a police chief? Maybe we ought to put a limit on the number of banks and make sure they are 1000 feet from schools so no stray bullets hit any children? Oh, think of the children- exposed to such danger!
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Comment #2 posted by Richard Zuckerman on January 26, 2010 at 20:03:21 PT:
How much crime has resulted from the overabundance
How much crime has resulted from the overabundance of pot dispensaries? How much crime has resulted from police agents? Has the crime rate gone up since those pot dispensaries began business? I saw a Los Angeles Times article about two weeks ago about a hiring freeze of forensic scientists there. We need to do something about the problem of shutting down these otherwise valuable tax-supporting businesses in the City of Los Angeles!! I plan to move back to California for this November's ballot measure which would legalize, regulate, and tax Cannabis "Marijuana" under State law. I am make preliminary arrangements, such as applying to a few colleges in California, including same colleges as part of the Federal Financial Aid Form for the Fall 2010 semester, YOU PEOPLE WILL HAVE MY ONE VOTE FOR THE POT LEGALIZATION ISSUE IN CALIFORNIA!! About ten minutes ago, I signed the petition on!!!
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Comment #1 posted by FoM on January 26, 2010 at 17:02:59 PT
Related Article From ABCNews
L.A. To Shutter Hundreds of Medical Marijuana DispensariesJanuary 26, 2010URL:
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