Orange to Consider Pot Dispensary Ban

Marijuana being weighed at a dispensary in California. (Photo credit: California Watch)

Orange may soon become the latest city in Orange County to be off limits to medical marijuana dispensaries with the City Council considering banning them at its meeting tonight.

While Orange already has in place a moratorium on such establishments, it is only temporary. The resolution being considered by the City Council would be a permanent prohibition.

“Our moratorium is coming to an end, and we had to do something,” City Attorney David DeBerry said.

DeBerry said the city has had problems with two dispensaries operating illegally, in one case under a falsified business license. Both dispensaries have been shut down.

“They were selling marijuana to just about anyone walking in off the street,” DeBerry said of the two establishments.

DeBerry said that an outright ban is simpler than regulating dispensaries because of the complicated legal situation surrounding medical marijuana.

“If everyone could get on the same page, [regulation] would be easier,” he said.

If adopted, the ban could end up being overturned as soon as next month, depending on the outcome of a suit seeking to overturn Anaheim’s ban on dispensaries.