With hundreds of illegal marijuana shops continuing to operate in the city, the Los Angeles Cannabis Regulation Commission unanimously threw its support Thursday behind a number of aggressive methods to crack down on the dispensaries, including the formation of a special task force and shutting off the businesses’ utilities.
“I’m frustrated, as many of you are,” Commission President Robert Ahn said. “I would have to say of all of the cannabis questions that I get or inquiries, at the top of the list is enforcement, and it’s really the one issue that, whether you are in the industry, part of the industry or in the community, (is) something that everyone agrees on. It’s just common sense. If you create laws, what good are the laws if they cannot be enforced?”
The commission unanimously voted to send a letter to the City Council’s Rules, Elections and Intergovernmental Relations Committee asking the city to immediately establish a task force on unlicensed cannabis businesses, to include members of the Department of Cannabis Regulation, the Los Angeles Police and Fire departments, the Department of Building and Safety, Department of Water and Power, and the city attorney’s and mayor’s offices.
The letter also will recommend that the task force consider shutting off utilities of illegal pot shops, padlocking or barricading illegal businesses, prosecuting the operators and the landlords, and assessing fines and penalties to property owners that allow unlicensed dispensaries to use their property. All of the recommendations have been under consideration by the City Council, including the option to shut off utilities. The council this week voted to have the City Attorney’s Office draft an ordinance outlining the policy.
Published: February 28, 2019
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