Los Angeles City Council voted Tuesday to allow dispensaries to continue selling medical marijuana, but they still are looking into capping how many dispensaries are allowed inside city limits.
Published reports state the council spent seven hours hashing out the deal. They failed to make a decision on whether medical marijuana should be grown only at those dispensaries or other locations. Councilman Jose Huizar wanted to make sure marijuana was not coming from drug cartels, according to reports.
Councilman Richard Alarcon proposed capping the amount of compensation dispensaries may earn. Those earnings are based on protocols for nonprofits, according to reports. The ordinance must be finalized but could go into effect immediately.
Voters passed a law in 1996 allowing medical pot users who have a doctor’s clearance. Another 2004 law further protected a patient or caregiver in medical marijuana use.
In Los Angeles, and in other municipalities such as Colorado, the commercial real estate industry has started to worry about the proliferation of medical marijuana facilities.
The issue at hand is that marijuana businesses are willing to pay rent for space, often in cash, which is particularly attractive to landlords desperate to lease space in a soft real estate market, according to brokers.
According to a Denver Business Journal report, some brokers report potential problems with such operations for other tenants and property owners:
* Mold contamination from growing operations that could harm other tenants, especially those with respiratory allergies.
* Heavy water use from growing operations; multiple tenants in a building often are monitored by the same water meter.
* Smoke and strong odors.
* Possible crime, including theft, at marijuana operations as well as nearby businesses.
* The long-term creditworthiness of medical marijuana facilities, since many are startups run by people with limited business experience.
November 25, 2009
Los Angeles Business
L.A. City Council reaches compromise on medical marijuana sales