New L.A. Law on MMJ Shops Faces Hazy Future
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New L.A. Law on MMJ Shops Faces Hazy Future
Posted by CN Staff on May 23, 2013 at 05:01:53 PT
 By Kate Linthicum
Source: Los Angeles Times
California -- Los Angeles voters took regulation of the city's medical marijuana shops into their own hands Tuesday, embracing a ballot measure to sharply reduce the number of dispensaries in the city. But as in all things related to pot policy, the future of the new law is hazy.Under the measure, only 135 dispensaries  those that were operating before a failed moratorium in 2007  will be allowed to stay open. But enforcement could prove a monumental challenge as backers of a rival measure threaten lawsuits and city lawyers begin the long process of identifying all of the city's dispensaries and bringing them into compliance.
"Now the city has some work to do," said Steven Lubell, a medical marijuana attorney who supported the winning measure.City officials, who have spent years struggling to regulate pot shops with little success, said they didn't know how many dispensaries were operating in Los Angeles. A recent police estimate put the number at around 700, but others said it could be more than double that. Jane Usher, a special assistant city attorney, said once the results of Tuesday's election are certified, city lawyers will begin updating their database of dispensaries and sending letters to operators notifying them of the new law.Those that opened before the moratorium will be required to be at least 600 feet from any school, park or child-care facility and pay 6% of their gross receipts in taxes. Those that opened after 2007 will be ordered to close.Usher acknowledged that some of the now-outlawed dispensaries would probably continue to operate. "There will be efforts to fly below the radar," she said.Dispensaries that don't comply with orders to close will be sued, she said.Adam Bierman, a consultant who helps people open dispensaries, predicted that profitable dispensaries will remain open as long as possible."Some of them generate a million or two [million] dollars a month," Bierman said. "You think those people are just going to pack their bags and leave?"Supporters of a rival ballot initiative, Measure F, which would have allowed unlimited dispensaries but would have toughened some regulations, also predicted that the pot wars were far from over. David Welch, an attorney who backed Measure F, said dispensaries that opened after 2007 were considering suing the city on the theory that the 2007 cutoff was arbitrary and unfair."I think there's going to be a big fight before they all go away," said Justin Hartfield, co-founder of WeedMaps, an online social network for medical marijuana patients that helps users find their nearest dispensary.Hartfield noted that many of the city's dispensaries rode out previous attempts at regulation, including a 2010 city ordinance that sought to cap the number of post-moratorium dispensaries at 70 and an attempt last year to completely ban shops. "Our guys have been very resilient throughout the years," said Hartfield, who also supported Measure F.Even if the city is eventually successful in shutting down dispensaries that opened after 2007, Hatfield said, an underground economy could develop. He said that in other cities where dispensaries have been limited, marijuana delivery services have replaced brick-and-mortar stores.Meital Manzuri, an attorney who specializes in medical marijuana law and who represented dispensaries that opened after the moratorium, said she believed that the new law would withstand legal challenges. She cited an appellate court ruling last year that upheld the use of the 2007 cutoff included in a previous ordinance. That ordinance never went into effect because it was challenged in lawsuits.Manzuri also cited this month's California Supreme Court ruling that cities have the right to ban dispensaries. The ruling sent a message to cities that "any sort of regulation they want" is allowed, Manzuri said.Usher agreed, saying the court rulings have given "credence and credibility" to the ordinance approved by voters Tuesday. "The good news is not only have the voters spoken with great clarity but the courts have," she said.Source: Los Angeles Times (CA)Author: Kate LinthicumPublished: May 22, 2013Copyright: 2013 Los Angeles TimesContact: letters latimes.comWebsite:  Medical Marijuana Archives 
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Comment #2 posted by disvet13 on May 23, 2013 at 12:38:47 PT:
lawurinating pharisees
this group of lawyers backed measure D and that group of lawyers backed measure E and the other group of lawyers backed measure F and all the lawyers had a job spending your tax dollars, and now that measure F passed the others 2 groups of lawyers are going to try and have it overturned, so all the lawyers from measure F will have to start working on fighting all the lawyers from measure d and e, while they all spend your tax dollars. it's called adversarial process bureaucracy, they teach them in your colleges. it's a hand down from the neuremburg trials, where the nazi's argued they weren't guilty, they were just following orders. if you trace it back a little further you'll hear woodrow wilsons warning...."there is an element that has invaded our government, a small group of contemptible men have made us a contemptible nation". the bilderburg group, the rockefellers and duponts gave us cancer, a small self replicating virus injected into the government process. after WW2 they brought as many as they could into the USA and let them teach law in our colleges. i see no difference in the lawyers and the pharisees, they all charged an admission fee before you could enter the temple of Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness. Until We the People vote for complete legalization the lawyers will never stop.
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Comment #1 posted by Sam Adams on May 23, 2013 at 08:24:14 PT
as always, a total whitewash of propaganda. No mention of: how many people will lose their jobs - how many children's parents will become unemployed? What were the average wages for cannabis industry employees versus other service economies? How does the cannabis industry rate at creating locally-owned business and small business owners compared to other industries?How much tax money will be lost for the school systems because of this? Social security income? Property tax payments? Impact of loss of foot traffic on surrounding businesses? The total number of alcohol-serving establishments in LA? Pharmacies? Fast-food places? the process to regulate the number of pharmacies, alcohol, and tobacco licensing compared to medMJ? How about some information on the trends of the MJ industry versus the larger US economy as a whole? These answers would be interesting. I'm guessing the MJ industry has average growth of over 100% per year over the last 10 years, and most other industries are shrinking.
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