LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — In addition to the election of a new mayor next week, voters will also be deciding the future of medical marijuana dispensaries in Los Angeles.
Measure D, Measure E, and Measure F have all been competing to set the rules for medical marijuana dispensaries, including how many will be allowed, where they will be allowed to locate, as well as what regulations they have to adhere to.
Los Angeles City Councilman, Bill Rosendahl, has surfaced as the leading force behind the campaign to pass Measure-D.
Rosendahl is a cancer survivor, and greatly credits medical marijuana with helping him to recover.
Measure-D would allow 135 dispensaries to remain open, closing all other dispensaries that were established before 2007. In addition, the proposition would increase the city tax to 6%.
“We’re supporting those who have quietly lived by the rules, are causing no problems, and give medicinal use for me,” Councilman Rosendahl said. “That’s the people I want to support.”
Measure-E, which is similar to Measure-D, closed down its campaign to support Measure-D.
“Proposition-D doesn’t distinguish between those that are doing it right, and those that aren’t,” Measure-F campaign strategist Michael Bustamante said.
Measure-F would allow all registered dispensaries that meet with the city’s criteria to remain open, which could result in over 1,000 dispensaries open in Los Angeles. The measure would also increase city tax to 6%.
Some members of the council are against all the propositions together.
“I think that we need to vote against these three, and have a ban, and wait until the California state legislature fixes their broken law,” Los Angeles City Council member Jose Huizar said.
Huizar is urging voters to vote against all three measures, suggesting that neighborhoods are “under siege” by the dispensaries. He uses Van Nuys Boulevard as an example, where a five-block stretch has eight dispensaries, including some that are right around the corner from two schools.
“Residents started complaining to me. They were saying ‘You know, I’m taking my kid to school, and these young kids are smoking the marijuana in front of the dispensaries.’” Huizar said.
Huizar’s stance against the measures prompted an exchange between the two opposing councilmen.
“You want to kill me, Jose Huizar?” councilman Rosendahl asked. “I know you don’t want to kill me, Jose Huizar.”