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The latest news in California medical marijuana law is that the California Supreme Court has unanimously voted to review three medical marijuana cases involving local ordinances that limit or ban marijuana dispensaries, reports the Los Angeles Times.
The cases are:
- Pack v. Superior Court. Finding that a comprehensive Long Beach regulatory scheme to govern marijuana collectives was preempted by federal law.
- City of Riverside v. Inland Empire Patient’s Health and Wellness Center, Inc. Upholding Riverside’s city-wide marijuana dispensary ban.
- People v. G3 Holistic. Unpublished ruling that an Upland ordinance banning medical marijuana dispensaries was not preempted by California medical marijuana law.
Medical marijuana ordinances currently vary among California’s cities. Though larger cities like Los Angeles, San Francisco, and San Jose allow dispensaries, many smaller cities, like Antioch, Pittsburg, and Pleasant Hill, have enacted moratoriums or bans on medical marijuana sellers, reports the San Jose Mercury-News.
While a ruling is still at least a year or more away, marijuana advocates are relieved that the state Supreme Court will finally weigh in on the preemption issue.
Joe Elford, chief counsel of Oakland-based Americans for Safe Access, told the Times that the state appellate court decisions were “problematic for patients,” and said, “We’re very pleased that local governments will now be unable to use appellate court decisions to deny patients access to medical marijuana in their own communities.”
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