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Fed's Marijuana Crackdown Leads to City Ban

Amidst conflicting laws from the state and federal government regulations on medical marijuana, the council unanimously voted to ban pot dispensaries until the law has more consistency.

On purely legal rationale, the to ban medical marijuana facilities until federal and California law align.

On Friday, federal prosecutors announced a crackdown on the state’s commercial marijuana industry, saying that they will not allow the for-profit sale of medical marijuana. However, the California voter-approved Compassionate Use Act of 1996 allows seriously ill patients to use medical marijuana with a doctor's permission, directly against federal law.

"Cities are in untenable dilemma between state law and federal law,” City Attorney Pamela Thompson said.

And councilmembers clearly expressed no desire to challenge the federal law by allowing medical marijuana facilities.

“We don’t need Redwood City to be made an example of,” Councilmember John Seybert said. “A city’s zoning ordinance or planning issues falls even lower on the totem pole of law, below state and federal.

The Planning Commission initially to ban marijuana based on land use issues. But the federal government’s active affront on the facilities was the primary reasoning for the councilmembers’ decision.

A disabled Veteran who relies on marijuana for medication explained the benefits of dispensaries for the community. After serving in the military, he said his ailments were so bad he wanted to end his life—until he began taking medical marijuana.

“I was a patient at the VA Hospital after 1993 and given about 400 medications to do everything from sleep to poop to stop stuttering,” he said. “For nine years, I wanted to end my life but then someone suggested medical marijuana.”

He discussed how the dispensaries are more than just distributive centers, but communities for patients to grow their own medication and obtain a better quality of life.

Though Councilmember Ian Bain said he sympathized with patients who are unable to acquire medication, he supported following the city attorney’s legal advice.

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Brash Brazen October 11, 2011 at 08:18 PM
Great,San Mateo sound like a great place to buy groceries,eat out & get gasoline.
bitburner October 11, 2011 at 09:03 PM
Our city counsel did this in Kern County and we reversed it with a petition. We needed 17,000+ signatures from registered voters we got 25,000+ at it was reversed. Don't Give Up!
terry mccaffrey October 11, 2011 at 11:15 PM
Why are we paying to stop something that is HARMLESS and can potentially make alot of money-for everyone! What should we do-use gov't- sponsered nicotine and die at taxpayer's expense!? This country of mine is screwed up-totally backwards!
Mike Smith October 12, 2011 at 01:52 AM
It appears that voting by the People means nothing in this country. Who does Eric Holder work for, anyway?
Brash Brazen October 22, 2013 at 05:01 PM
WE'RE BACK !!! Now that the Fed's have given their tacit approval,two states have legalized & with the polls showing overwhelming support in California the despicable stance of these prohibitionist bastards is about to become a moot point !!! Encourage everyone you know to sign the petition now circulating to put a referendum on California's 2014 ballot to LEGALIZE MARIJUANA !!! Let's rub their noses in it !!!

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