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by Blake Herzog, (Source:Desert Sun)

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04 Feb 2011

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The Rancho Mirage City Council voted Thursday to allow medical marijuana deliveries to qualified residents.


And if their dispensary won't deliver for free, the city will subsidize up to $25 of travel costs per patient per month within a 12-mile radius. Dispensaries would be banned within city limits.


The city's "Medical Cannabis Compassionate Access Program" is believed to be the first of its kind in the state.


"This is an experiment," Mayor Richard Kite said.


The dispensary ban was approved on a 4-0 vote, but Councilman Ron Meepos voted against the subsidy and allowing delivery.


"Funding marijuana delivery to patients and not for other medicines to be delivered to patients, to me that's a moral problem," Meepos said.


Councilman Scott Hines didn't vote because he works for a firm that represents a dispensary.


The effective date isn't clear because the council first will have to lift a moratorium on all dispensaries, which won't expire until December. The dispensary ban must go to a Planning Commission vote, which may come next week.


Just before the meeting, the city was served with a $650,000 lawsuit from two dispensaries, one of which briefly opened in the city and another that tried to.


Jeff Lake, the attorney representing the two dispensaries - Desert Heart Collective and Metro Meds Herbal Solutions - said the plan is unconstitutional because it doesn't really ensure residents have access.


"If every city in the county adopted this ordinance, there would be no access for anyone," Lake said.


The suit also claims the city violated several sections of the California Constitution, including the 1996 voter-approved medical marijuana law.



powered.pngMAP posted-by: Jay Bergstrom





Share This Article delicious.gif digg.gif stumble.gif facebook.gif twitter.gif Pubdate: Fri, 04 Feb 2011

Source: Desert Sun, The (Palm Springs, CA)

Copyright: 2011 The Desert Sun

Contact: http://local2.thedesertsun.com/mailer/opinionwrap.php

Website: http://www.mydesert.com/

Details: http://www.mapinc.org/media/1112

Note: Does not accept LTEs from outside circulation area.

Author: Blake Herzog

Bookmark: http://mapinc.org/topic/Dispensaries





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