LA City Council to Kibosh Weed Dispensaries

June 9th, 2009 by Russ

Things are about to get mighty interesting in the City of Angels. After a two-year city-wide free for all in which weed storefronts have become more plentiful than Starbucks, the LA City Council has decided to strike back against the dispensaries by retroactively reviewing their application paperwork.

The dispute is over a legal loophole that allowed dispensaries to freely open during a two-year moratorium passed by the City Council. Under the less than watchful eye of the Planning and Land Use Management Committee, any applicant claiming any kind of hardship was granted permission to open up shop.

After a great deal of public pressure, the City Council has now reversed course away from its blissful ignorance and is attempting to re-seal a Pandora’s Box that has made LA weed storefronts more common than Starbucks franchises.

Starting this week, the Council is going to be dealing with the hardship applicants on a case by case basis. In other words, there is a very real possibility that the city of Los Angeles is about to start shutting down dozens (if not hundreds) of newly minted businesses in the midst of a severe recession.

Given that most of the store operators were under the assumption that the Council had approved the new Weed Gold Rush, having given their tacit approval of the loophole for two years, things may get a bit heated.

The whole situation reminds me of that old joke: What’s the difference between a lightbulb and a pregnant woman? You can unscrew a lightbulb. I’m not so sure that Los Angeles can unscrew itself from the new economic reality it has created.

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