Local California Government Asking for Opinions on Medical Marijuana

There is no question more people across the country, specifically in California, have grown increasingly supportive of allowing the use of medical marijuana and are moving toward support for complete legalization. County officials are faced with the difficult task of making regulations that respond to the changing landscape of marijuana regulations while not upsetting many who still cling to outdated fears and oppose the use of medical marijuana.

question.jpgAccording to a recent article from the San Anselmo-Fairfax Patch, Marin County Board of Supervisors are hosting a public workshop during an upcoming legislative meeting at which there will be a review of a proposal to allow medical marijuana dispensaries to operate in certain unincorporated areas in the county.

Currently, medical marijuana dispensaries are still illegal in the unincorporated areas of the county, but this new proposal hopes to change that. This is in response to a recommendation from a civil grand jury two years ago that county officials develop a realistic set of laws permitting medical cannabis dispensaries in these unincorporated areas of the county. County officials looked at a variety of different options, including the use of storefront dispensaries, which can provide cannabis to patients with a doctor’s recommendation for medicinal cannabis use.

As our Orange County medical marijuana attorneys can explain, while medical cannabis use still remains illegal under federal regulations, which still consider marijuana to be a Schedule I controlled dangerous substance, California has allowed local governments to permit the use of medicinal marijuana, as they deem appropriate. It is also up to these local governments to decide where and how marijuana can be sold, and if medical marijuana dispensaries can be in a storefront location.

One of the problems county officials have with the current prohibition of medical marijuana dispensaries in county, is that patients are still legally allowed to purchase medical marijuana, but they have a choice of either traveling to another county or city in which it is legally dispensed or using a delivery service. County officials say they do not like these delivery services coming into their county, because they have no way to regulate what they are selling, and they feel this may be dangerous to patients. County supervisors have stated their seriously ill residents are in need of medicine and deserve better.

The current proposal, which is scheduled for discussion at the upcoming meeting, would grant up to a total of three special licenses to operate a medical marijuana dispensary. These licenses would be spread out to the three distinct geographical regions of the county. There is a so a requirement all dispensaries must be located in commercial areas and at least 600 feet from a park or school. There will also be certain safety guidelines, which must be followed.

One of the problems we have seen in the past with public meetings, such as the one scheduled for next month, is that, sometimes, only the people who oppose permitting medial marijuana dispensaries show up to the meeting to protest and argue against it. Even though there are likely far more who support medical marijuana use than those still against it, their voices cannot be heard if they do not show up the meeting and make their opinions known.

The Los Angeles CANNABIS LAW Group represents growers, dispensaries, collectives, patients and those facing marijuana charges. Call us at 714-937-2050.

Additional Resources:

County Wants Your Feedback on Medical Marijuana, May 22, 2015, San Anselmo-Fairfax Path

More Blog Entries:
Marijuana Insurance Considerations Amid Expanding Legalization, March 13, 2015, Los Angeles Marijuana Lawyer Blog