Headlines in the LA Times Wednesday say “L.A. repeals its ban on pot stores.” So, once again LA has no law regulating dispensaries. The Town of Mammoth Lakes does have an ordinance on the books and has moved forward to grant a permit for the second of two dispensaries allowed in the town in spite of legal issues that still hang fire in the courts.
Mammoth Police Chief Dan Watson said that his department is “close to finishing the review of applicants and making recommendations to the Planning Commission.” The Commissioners make the final decision.
In July, the Police Department confirmed that they had received two applications for the permit to operate a medical marijuana dispensary. The two applicants were Don Wright, Jr. of Mammoth Lakes and David Mogg from Lancaster. At that time, The Chief explained that his department determines if an application meets the requirements of the ordinance. If so, they move on to the Planning Commission which will grant the one available permit.
In light of all the court action and legal uncertainties about medical marijuana, Chief Watson had recommended a moratorium on the second dispensary, but the Town Council decided to go with the vote of the people to allow those pot stores.
In Los Angeles, the dispensary situation is far more political. Some officials have an eye on elections, a previously planned referendum to open dispensaries and their own re-elections.
The conflicts that Mammoth faces between state and federal law continue to plague all cities in California where the state supports legalization of medical marijuana but the federal government does not.