June 7th, 2009 – With hundreds of medical marijuana dispensaries operating across Los Angeles in violation of a moratorium, the City Council has set the stage to start enforcing the ban, which went into effect almost 21 months ago. The city clerk has notified 14 dispensaries that their requests for exemptions from the moratorium will be considered by the City Council on Tuesday.
Most, if not all, are likely to be denied on the grounds that they were not registered with the city by the moratorium’s deadline in 2007. A denial would allow the city’s code enforcement bureau and the city attorney to take legal steps to force them to shut down.
The city allowed 186 existing dispensaries to stay open under the moratorium. Since then, 532 dispensaries have asked the council for exemptions that would allow them to operate. Most of those have opened without waiting for permission. That has triggered concerns from activists in neighborhoods in which they have clustered. The city is still developing regulations to control where dispensaries can open.
Councilman Ed Reyes, who heads the committee that oversees the moratorium, promised earlier this week to start reviewing the exemption applications. The council has ruled on none of them. That has hampered enforcement. The city attorney’s office says it would be hard to make a case that a dispensary should be shut down when it had an exemption request pending before council.
Since Tuesday, when Reyes said he would start to deal with the applications, two dozen more dispensaries filed for exemptions, almost double the number the council will consider next Tuesday. It will also vote on whether to stop accepting new applications for exemptions.
Here are the dispensaries the council will consider Tuesday:
Aloha Spirit Organic Consumables
6657 Reseda Blvd. #202, Reseda
West Coast Holistic Institute
7226 Remmet Ave., Canoga Park
The Grasshopper 215
21146 Ventura Blvd., Woodland Hills
20035 Van Owen St., Winnetka
The Vapor Room
305 S. Hewitt St., downtown
Atwater Alternative Care Collective
3106 Glendale Blvd., Atwater Village
3401 Glendale Blvd. B, Atwater Village
3405 Glendale Blvd., Atwater Village
Global Meds Collective
3425 Glendale Blvd., Atwater Village
Accurate Services Medical Dispensary
3429 Glendale Blvd., Atwater Village
House of Kush
1632 Colorado Blvd., Eagle Rock
Hemp Factory V
2912 Colorado Blvd., Eagle Rock
American Eagle Collective
2501 Colorado Blvd. No. B, Eagle Rock
Green Leaf Collective
5607 E. Huntington Drive No. N, El Sereno