California: City Council to Review Bill Allowing Dispensaries

The Huffington Post reports, that the city council in Santa Monica will review a bill that allowed two medical marijuana dispensaries.


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The Huffington Post reported that the legislation has a number of limitations that greatly hamper the locations of the two proposed dispensaries.

The sizes of the dispensaries are limited to a total of 2,500 square feet but there are other regulations as well. The two new medicinal marijuana dispensaries would be required to position themselves in the city’s healthcare district and adhere to a number of very difficult and specific zoning restrictions.

The dispensaries must be a minimum of 500 feet from any library, daycare center, park, or school. In addition, the businesses must be located at least 1,000 feet from each other. According to earlier reports, the city council of Santa Monica has been a difficult nut to crack when it comes to allowing dispensaries in the city at all.

The argument was made that Santa Monica residents could travel to neighboring areas in order to acquire their medical marijuana supply.

Advocates from Santa Monicans for Safe Access argue that the Healthcare district many be too small to have room for any dispensaries. Marijuana advocates are concerned that there are only a handful of buildings in the area identified by the city council and much of the space might already be rented.

Although the healthcare district may have some buildings available there is also a school located about 200 feet from one end of the area. This immediately cuts off a portion of the healthcare district as a possibility.

Advocates also claim that 2,500 square feet is not nearly big enough and would like to see the size increased to the size allowed by West Hollywood, which allows dispensaries to have a total square footage of 4,500 feet.

It is important that the space is big enough to sufficiently serve patients. Patients need enough room to provide additional holistic medicines as well as waiting rooms for patient use.

Although medical marijuana advocates feel most of the draft zoning regulations should be relaxed, some advocates feel the required distance from schools should be increased from 500 feet to 1,000 feet to protect children and because federal laws greatly increase penalties for crimes like drug dealing within 1,000 feet of a school.

The Los Angeles CANNABIS LAW Group represents growers, dispensaries, collectives, patients and those facing marijuana charges. Call us at 949-375-4734.
More Blog Entries:

United States Lags Behind Other Countries in Marijuana Legalization, December 1, 2013, Los Angeles Marijuana Lawyer Blog
The Feds Backtrack on Marijuana Policy: Planned “Enforcement Actions” in Colorado, November 28, 2013, Los Angeles Marijuana Lawyer Blog
Additional Resources:

Two Pot Shops Allowed in Zoning Draft, November 21, 2013, David Mark Simpson

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