By Sandra Emerson, Wes Woods II and Ryan Hagen, Staff Writers
Posted: 05/08/2013 02:49:30 PM PDT
Updated: 05/08/2013 04:05:02 PM PDT
Special Section: Medical Marijuana
Now that the more than 180 cities and counties up and down the state have the state’s highest court on their side, many local government officials are actively seeking the closure of medical marijuana dispensaries operating in violation of their zoning laws.
In San Bernardino County, cities from Upland on the west to Redlands on the east, as well as the county in its unincorporated areas, are marshalling their forces to dispense with the remaining dispensaries ASAP.
The California Supreme Court on Monday upheld the right of cities and counties to ban the dispensaries, giving officials 100 percent certainty to enforce their ordinances that marijuana advocates believed were in violation of state laws that make it legal for the use of marijuana for medicinal purposes.
San Bernardino began moving against its remaining marijuana dispensaries almost immediately after the court’s ruling, said City Attorney James F. Penman.
The city had 30 dispensaries operating illegally when the court ruled, and since then at least 10 have closed, he said.
“What we hope to find is empty buildings,” he said. “This is a two-pronged effort: These couple weeks we’re focusing on closing them down, then we will be going after the owners of the properties that allowed these illegal operations to operate and we will be going after them for administrative civil penalties. ”
To read entire story, click here.