With an estimated 1,000-plus weed stores inside our city limits – not to mention all the other dispensaries in the region – L.A. is the medical marijuana capital of America.
So if we told you we made a list of “The 10 Highest Cities In America,” you'd probably yawn. But the big news here is that we didn't come in at No. 1.
Are the folks at home-buying website Movoto blowing smoke?
L.A. is so high that Snoop Dogg is, for all intents and purposes, our cultural ambassador.
So why did we only make No. 10 on Movoto's list? The site says the ranking was “a fairly serious, data-driven affair” that involved calculating “dispensaries per capita,” “residents with medical marijuana cards,” “head shops per capita,” “marijuana-related events,” the legal status of weed and the prosecution of cannabis users.
A Movoto spokesman told us:
Based on a number of factors (head shops, medical marijuana cards, dispensaries, etc), Los Angeles cracked the top 10. San Bernardino is fourth and the O.C. has a couple cities on there as well.
In fact, San Bernardino (No. 4) beat L.A., and so did Santa Ana (No. 6) and Irvine (No. 7). Irvine!?
Movoto said L.A.'s large population hurt us in the rankings. Despite our large number of dispensaries, we “simply couldn't hold up when looked at on a per-capita basis,” Movoto stated, coming in ninth in that metric.
However, it appears the site sorely undercounted the number of shops in town, putting the figure at about 368 and not at the 1,000 or so widely believed to exist here.
Even after L.A. voters last year decided to limit the number of shops to 100 or so, collectives keep opening. In fact, the City Attorney's office just shut one of those new ones down.
Sill, the site states:
More people in Los Angeles have medical pot cards than in any other city in our top 100 – 56,111 people in all.
Six of the 10 winners were California cities, at least. But Colorado, which this month celebrated its first legal recreational sales, killed it, with Denver coming in first place.
Here's the list: