L.A. Agrees to Limit Medical-Marijuana Dispensaries

What do you think, should there be limits on how many medical marijuana outlets a city has, and where they can be situated? Tamara Audi reports on an effort to do just that in Los Angeles, for the Wall Street Journal:

The Los Angeles City Council on Wednesday delayed a vote on a much-anticipated medical marijuana ordinance, asking planning officials to return next week with information on how many dispensaries could be closed because they are near homes, schools and public gathering sites.

Council members indicated a vote could come in January on the draft ordinance, which would provide guidelines to greatly reduce the number of marijuana storefronts and push them out of neighborhoods and into industrial areas. The City Council agreed Tuesday to limit the number of dispensaries to 70.

When the state passed a law allowing for medical-marijuana cooperatives in 2004, Los Angeles never set forth guidelines for how they should operate. That led to the rampant growth of dispensaries: The number in the city is estimated at 1,000, making medical marijuana one of the city’s fastest-growing industries.

As more dispensaries opened, police, city officials and residents complained that many were illegal cash businesses that had little to do with medical care. The city decided to crack down.

“Today we took the first step in regaining the trust of the residents of Los Angeles by protecting the integrity and safety of our communities while…offering medical marijuana to those who truly need it,” Councilman José Huizar said in an emailed statement Tuesday evening…

[continues in the Wall Street Journal]

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  • girlmachine

    It's funny to me that I actually live in Los Angeles, and yet I only know of one dispensary. 1000 seems a little excessive for a single city, but if the sales are getting taxed, I'm all for it. We really need the funds these days!

  • GoodDoktorBad

    Do they limit the number of pharmacies in general? These are now legal prescription drugs prescribed by physicians. By law, just as legit as Wallgreens or CVS. Do they prevent these companies from building near homes, schools and public gathering sites? I doubt it. The drugs they keep at pharmacies have far more harmful potential than a Marijuana dispensary. Pot heads have to ride in the back of the bus, apparently.