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3 Marijuana Ballot Initiatives Likely For L.A. In May

You might have three different medical marijuana initiatives to vote on during next May's city election.

The L.A. City Council threw its own hat into the ring, seeing how much the people have loved its past attempts at regulating the pot-shop trade. (We kid -- the council's full-on dispensary ban was overturned after the success of a referendum).

Based on a previous proposal from the City Attorney's office, the council's initiative would:

-Increase taxes on dispensaries from $50 per $1,000 in sales to $60.

-Outlaw any pot shops that weren't open before an October, 2007 city moratorium on such businesses.

-Prohibit dispensaries that are ...

... located within a 1,000-foot radius of a school, public park, public library, religious institution, child care facility, youth center, alcoholism or drug abuse recovery or treatment facility, or other medical marijuana business.

It's the most restrictive of the three initiatives and nearly mirrors one forwarded by supporters of the pre-2007 shops, which number less than 180 today.

Their initiative would decimate the competition, seeing that there are 1,000 or so dispensaries in town today.

The council initiative's backers, including Paul Koretz, want to earn the support of those 2007 folks, including the Greater Los Angeles Collective Alliance and the United Food and Commercial Workers Local 770, which represents some pot shop workers.

Good luck with that.

The other initiative would basically tolerate the 1,000 or so dispensaries we have now, so long as they register with the city and adhere to certain rules such as opening hours and background checks for employees.

The council gave the initial go-ahead to have the City Attorney draft up its own initiative in an 11-1 vote today.

[With reporting from City News Service / @dennisjromero / djromero@laweekly.com / @LAWeeklyNews]


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