On Wednesday, August 28, LAPD officers served a search warrant and closed an illegal dispensary located at 8931 S. Broadway in South Los Angeles. This came immediately after a press conference where Los Angeles City Councilmember Marqueece Harris-Dawson, the L.A. Mayor’s Office and the Cannabis Enforcement Task Force announced a coordinated effort to stop illegal dispensaries in Los Angeles.
“This is something that the Black community has to pay a lot of attention to,” said Harris-Dawson. “The [Cannabis Social Equity Program (SEP)] was put in place to make it so that Black communities that have been targeted by the war on drugs can get ahead in the new cannabis industry.
“If we don’t stop the illegal operators, that opportunity goes away, so it’s important to us for the preservation of our neighborhoods, but also, for the well-being of our people.”
This enforcement action is part of a multi-faceted plan to close illegal cannabis shops. During the press conference, it was stated that cease and desist letters were delivered to 231 illegal businesses, and the property owners of those businesses.
“This is an issue of equity, not an assault on cannabis users or sellers,” said Harris-Dawson. “City Council District 8 has far too many illegal dispensaries and we cannot allow this to mirror liquor stores in the 80’s, 90’s, and 2000’s.
“Illegal dispensaries poison our neighborhoods and their own customers by operating dangerous unregulated businesses. We have over seventy illegal dispensaries in our district and dozens are still listed on platforms like Weedmaps.”
Utilizing a new ordinance, the city’s Department of Water and Power has shut off utilities at 193 illegal dispensaries. Additionally, Councilmember Harris-Dawson introduced a motion allowing Building & Safety to padlock, board up, or fence off illegal businesses.
Published: September 05, 2019