Politics, government and public life for Southern California

LA releases list of authorized marijuana dispensaries

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48205 full

The Los Angeles city attorney’s office has released the names of 134 medical marijuana dispensaries eligible to remain open under Measure D, the new law approved by voters in May.

Under Measure D, dispensaries must meet three requirements to continue to operate: they must have registered with the city in both 2007 and 2011, and under Measure M, the pot taxation measure. 

"These 134 dispensaries appear to satisfy the three threshold immunity requirements," city attorney spokesman Frank Mateljian said.

Document: See the full list of dispensaries

Hundreds of other dispensaries must close. The new law took effect June 20.

Eligible dispensaries must be located at least 600 feet from schools and parks, and at least 1,000 feet from each other. They may only stay open from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. Dispensaries have 180 days to comply.

LAPD Chief Charlie Beck has said he hopes most will voluntarily follow the new law.

Newly-elected City Attorney Mike Feuer supported Measure D, and vowed during his campaign to enforce it.  In contrast, his predecessor Carmen Trutanich at one time sought to close all pot shops in the city.

U.S. Attorney Andre Birotte, the region's chief federal prosecutor, said Measure D dispensaries are still subject t0 prosecution – just like any other dispensary.

“It doesn’t mean anything to us, quite frankly," Birotte told KPCC Monday.  "As long as we have evidence to believe that marijuana dispensaries are violating both state and federal law."

Federal law prohibits the use of marijuana under any circumstances. California law allows the medical use of pot, but dispensaries must be non-profit.  Federal prosecutors believe the vast majority of pot shops operate as for-profit businesses and violate state law. The U.S. Attorney's office has sent warning letters to more than 100 of them.

Birotte said most closed voluntarily. Prosecutors filed criminal cases against three people.

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