The Eagle Rock Patch was able to sit down recently with Los Angeles City Council member Jose Huizar and tackle a bevy of topics, including medical marijuana dispensaries in Los Angeles.
Huizar has been in the news recently because he proposed a ban on all marijuana dispensaries in the city. That has led to much criticism from supporters of the medical marijuana industry, as a ban on dispensaries would not only severely limit the ability for people with cancer and other illnesses to get the marijuana they need for treatment, but it would put people out of jobs and cause the city to take a hit in tax revenue.
Our Los Angeles medical marijuana attorneys have followed this news closely as it could have a profound effect on our clients — the legal users, growers, distributors and sellers of this important medicinal drug.
The publication sat down with Huizar in his city hall office recently and asked about a couple topics, but of most import was the topic of dispensaries in the city. Huizar said that he supports the access of patients who need medicinal marijuana.
The city council member, however said that he wishes to strike a balance between people who legally should have access to marijuana and the “ill effects that come with dispensaries.” He said he wants to prevent an over-concentration of dispensaries and keep them far from churches, schools and other establishments.
Because of a recent court ruling, the city no longer has an enforceable law for dispensaries. He told the media he worries that this will lead to hundreds more dispensaries popping up around the city by people who want to try to make a quick dollar, even if they get shut down.
Huizar says he wants to ban all dispensaries so that the city can get direction from the California Supreme Court about what to do to control dispensaries. He believes the the court can give guidance on the law, which he calls “very flawed.”
He believes the state’s law is susceptible to loopholes. He pointed to laws in Oregon, where a patient can get a prescription for medicinal marijuana only from a primary care physician. In California, any doctor can make the recommendation, which Huizar says could cause problems.
Oregon’s laws also limit the types of ailments that are eligible for medical marijuana. There are only certain ailments that can require marijuana and the patient must show a history of the ailment before getting a prescription or recommendation for marijuana.
He wants to create safeguards for local communities while still allowing those who need the marijuana to have access, he said. He also pointed to pressures from the federal government, who have recently threatened dispensaries, users and landlords who rent to dispensaries.
Our Los Angeles medical marijuana lawyers believe that a ban on dispensaries is a bad knee-jerk reaction to a murky situation. While there are certainly problems with the state law, local city ordinances, the illegal drug trade and interference from the federal government, a shut down isn’t in anyone’s best interests. We hope that city officials continue working to find a solution good for everyone.
At the end of the day, voters legalized medical marijuana. Period. Any murkiness has been caused by the wrangling of politicians who won’t accept that simple fact.
The CANNABIS LAW GROUP offers experienced and aggressive representation to the medical marijuana industry in Los Angeles, throughout Orange County and elsewhere throughout Southern California. Call 949-375-4734 for a confidential consultation to discuss your rights.
More Blog Entries:
Lawsuits Filed Against Feds and Their Attempts to Stop the Medical Marijuana Industry in California: December 1, 2011
Huizar on Marijuana Dispensaries, Occupy L.A. and High Taxes, by Aaron Proctor and Ajay Singh, Eagle Rock Patch