L.A.'s original pot shops got bad news Friday: Only 100 of 135 would be allowed to stick around, and those 100 would be chosen by lottery. Sort of like being told it's Christmas, but you have a 1/4 chance of not getting a present.
And, yeah, this means all those other pot shops — more than 400 at one point — will finally be officially and absolutamentally (we think) outlawed. Although we've heard this before.
The City Council's years-long attempts to regulate L.A.'s cannabis retailers has been so botched that even after it finally enacted its rules last June outlaw shops defied authorities and stayed open and the city actually backed off enforcement at one point.
This latest round of marijuana legislation was inspired by a judge who ruled in December that the city's first attempt to regulate weed sellers wasn't wholly legit.
So the City Council on Friday made a few amendments to its pot-shop law to make it court-challenge proof. We'll see. One of those changes says that shops that were opened before a 2007 moratorium was enacted can apply for this lottery.
Another says those that are eligible under the lottery can then move if they violate another part of the law that says shops can't be within 1,000 feet of schools, churches and parks.
For sure one of those 135 shops that followed the law all these years and was shut out of the chance to stay open anyway as a result of a random lottery will sue, though. And then maybe we'll be back to the wild west of weed once more.
Our commenter of the day, Jerome Fizzle, says why not just let all the original 135 survive?
“For Gods sake, allow the 135. The sued hardships paid 350k to play. The 135 are the original ones, they paved the way, why should they be chastised? Regarding the zoning mandate…let the 135 stay where they are, but if they want to move due to ridiculous rent or landlord maintenance issues, then they should follow the 1000 ft rule too … “