MORE

Pot Shops Who Could Be Shut Down To Face A Judge Today

The long, strange saga of L.A.'s medicinal marijuana ordinance continues today as 121 shops -- ruled by the City Clerk as not meeting requirements for final stamp of approval from the city -- will face Judge Anthony J. Mohr, who is expected to create a time-line for allowing shop proprietors to air their grievances.

This comes after the surprising announcement last month that just 41 shops were in compliance and met all the requirements to move into the final approval phase.

The ordinance, which went into effect in June, was expected to shut down most of the 583 shops thought then to be existence then; the City Council intended for at least 70 to remain open but anticipated more like 130 remaining open. A much smaller group of shops met all the requirements, and the City Attorney has given a reprieve on enforcing the ordinance until Judge Mohr determines that the ordinance is legal and has been applied legally. (A separate group of shuttered shops has its own litigation.)

Many of the shops were surprised and further angered because the City Clerk offered no explanation as to why they didn't meet the requirements, which included having the same owner and management since opening; moving just once, and only for reasons of a threatened DEA action; and passing a criminal background check.

Separately, City Councilmen Paul Koretz and Bill Rosendahl have offered a motion, which the council discussed in closed session Tuesday, requiring the City Attorney to report to the council on the "justification and status of the closure requests," essentially forcing City Attorney Carmen Trutanich to explain why he wants to shut down the shops. The council hasn't acted on the motion yet.