New L.A. Law On Medical Marijuana Shops Faces Hazy Future

Los Angeles voters took regulation of the city’s medical marijuana shops into their own hands Tuesday, embracing a ballot measure to sharply reduce the number of dispensaries in the city.

But as in all things related to pot policy, the future of the new law is hazy.

Under the measure, only 135 dispensaries — those that were operating before a failed moratorium in 2007 — will be allowed to stay open. But enforcement could prove a monumental challenge as backers of a rival measure threaten lawsuits and city lawyers begin the long process of identifying all of the city’s dispensaries and bringing them into compliance.

“Now the city has some work to do,” said Steven Lubell, a medical marijuana attorney who supported the winning measure.

City officials, who have spent years struggling to regulate pot shops with little success, said they didn’t know how many dispensaries were operating in Los Angeles. A recent police estimate put the number at around 700, but others said it could be more than double that. Jane Usher, a special assistant city attorney, said once the results of Tuesday’s election are certified, city lawyers will begin updating their database of dispensaries and sending letters to operators notifying them of the new law.

– Read the entire article at LA Times.

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