A state bill that would have allowed cities to prohibit home deliveries of marijuana has been sidelined for the year amid concerns that doing so would further hamper California’s lagging market for cannabis.
The action comes just days after 24 cities including Beverly Hills, Riverside and Covina filed a lawsuit against the state, asking the courts to invalidate a California regulation put in place earlier this year that allows home deliveries statewide, including in cities that bar pot shops.
Assemblyman Ken Cooley (D-Rancho Cordova) will decide later whether to revive his proposal next year, he said Wednesday, a day after the Assembly Business and Professions Committee deadlocked on the bill with a 7-7 vote and it failed to pass.
“I actually think they are wrong on the policy,” Cooley said of colleagues who voted against his bill or abstained.
Industry officials and some legislators said the measure would limit access to marijuana for consumers, including those who have medical marijuana prescriptions for illnesses.
Assemblyman Kevin McCarty (D-Sacramento) was among those who voted against the bill, noting that few cities, including his hometown, allow retail sales.
“But all around us are these deserts of people who can’t get access,” McCarty said. “For people who are driving … 50, 60, 100 miles to go from their residence to Sacramento [to buy cannabis], it just doesn’t seem fair.”
Cooley sought to win over skeptics on the bill by including enforcement grants for cities that allow retail stores.
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