Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Here Come the Regulators

The City Council of Los Angeles voted 9-3 to pass an ordinance restricting the number of medical marijuana shops in the city, and also restricting where they can be located. The ordinance rules that...

- The number of shops is capped at 70, unless they were registered with the city before 2007. This brings the total number of shops to 150 at the most.

- Over 500 shops will have to close as a result of this.

- The shops must be at least 1,000 feet from schools, libraries, parks, and other medical marijuana shops. The 1,000 feet rule also applies to any place the city deems to be a "sensitive use".

- The city will also levy "monitoring fees" on these shops. The actual dollar figure for these fees has yet to be determined.

So now, we're forcing these shops to be lesser in number, and pretty much away from prominent locations...which just makes it harder for sick people who need the marijuana to live a less-painful existance as they battle serious illnesses. Now, they have to travel off the main drags (you know, where handicapped parking and other accommodations are more prevalent), and have to travel further.

Some will say "well, they still have 150 shops to choose from". However, Los Angeles itself is home to nearly 4 million people, and the LA metropolitan area is home to almost 13 million residents. Plus, with so many shops opening up and thriving, obviously there was a market in this large and populous area.

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