City Council Forced to Repeal Restriction on Medical Marijuana in San Diego

City Council will be repealing a number of restrictions that they’re trying to force on medical marijuana in San Diego. This attempt to enact these rules comes after a number of cities across the United States continue to increase enforcement and regulations on these medical marijuana storefront operators, according to the San Diego SignOn.
Earlier this week, members of the San Diego City Council were forced to repeal their rules or to leave these decisions to the voters though a ballot; a coalition of medical marijuana advocates submitted their concerns and had enough signatures to qualify a referendum.

Our San Diego medical marijuana attorneys don’t believe that local municipalities should have the authority to pass any rules or restrictions that hinder the rights of marijuana businesses and patients in any city or county. This issue should have been settled 15 years ago by resident votes. We do understand that oftentimes rules are better than flat-out bans, but where does the unnecessary regulating end?

This repeal is leaving the San Diego city collectives in a legal limbo.

The ordinance would have made it mandatory for all of the city’s collectives to close up shop and discontinue business practices until being granted a permit. If an application for a permit is approved, then a dispensary would then be limited to operation in some commercial and industrial zones. They would be required to operate at least 600 feet from one another. They would also be required to keep at least 600 feet from schools, playgrounds, libraries, child-care and youth facilities, parks and churches.

In some of the latest attempts to regulate the growing number of collectives throughout the state of California, local municipalities are turning to outright bans in many areas.

Back in June, San Diego County was added to the list of government looking into stopping the sale of medical marijuana within its boundaries altogether. City rules now limit collectives to industrial areas only. Collectives are also prohibited from operating within 1,000 feet of parks, churches, homes, schools, libraries and other medical marijuana facilities. Supervisors later approved an $11,000 annual fee for collective operators.

Back in 1996, three county supervisors were so opposed to Proposition 215 that they voted to sue the state to get it to completely overturn the laws that allow medical marijuana. Proposition 215 is the voter-approved initiative that permits residents to grow and smoke marijuana on their physician’s recommendation to treat a number of disorders, symptoms and conditions.

Years later, the U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear an appeal from San Diego and San Bernardino counties. This rejection ultimately ended that suit.

Earlier this month, Mother Earth’s Alternative Healing Cooperative opened as the first legally permitted medical marijuana collective in the county.

The CANNABIS LAW GROUP is representing more than a dozen dispensaries in lawsuits over local city and county ordinances in Los Angeles and the surrounding area. Call 949-375-4734 for a confidential consultation to discuss your rights.

More Blog Entries:

Medical Marijuana Dispensaries in Garden Grove Now Required to Register with City Council, Marijuana Lawyer Blog, July 24, 2011

Targeting Medical Marijuana Industry Only Hurts Patients who rely on the Treatment, Marijuana Lawyer Blog, July 14, 2011

Promises from Obama Administration to Medical Marijuana Industry in Los Angeles Fade Away, Marijuana Lawyer Blog, July 12, 2011

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