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Southland considers ways to regulate pot

October 26, 2009 12:26:52 AM PDT
As the controversy continues over medical marijuana, many cities are considering their enforcement options. The White House announced last week that federal prosecutors will no longer be making a priority of prosecuting growers and sellers.

In a meeting scheduled for Monday night, the Long Beach City Council will consider their options for regulating collectives that have opened in the city recently.

In Los Angeles, a new proposal will go to the ballot next month that would shut down the city's medical marijuana distribution system by banning all sales and sharply curtailing a collective's ability to grow and obtain medicine. The ordinance would limit each collective to a single garden of about 100 plants, which means they could each only serve a handful of members.

If the ordinance passes, Los Angeles would lose a lot of revenue. There are between 100,000 to 200,000 patients in the city, which amounts to annual sales up to $800 million.

Those who oppose the proposal said even if it does pass, it will be challenged in courts. Opponents also argue that Los Angeles should follow in the footsteps of cities like Oakland, San Francisco and West Hollywood that have already enforced license regulation plus taxation.


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