Pubdate: Mon, 12 Apr 2010
Source: Napa Valley Register (CA)
Copyright: 2010 Lee Enterprises
Author: John Waters Jr.
Bookmark: (Cannabis - Medicinal)


The Calistoga City Council voted 4-0 last week to  extend the city's 
ban on medicinal marijuana  dispensaries for 12 more months. 
Councilwoman Karen  Slusser was absent.

The Upvalley city has been resisting allowing marijuana  dispensaries 
for a year. On March 30, 2009, the city  received a business license 
application for a medical  marijuana dispensary, which was later 
withdrawn by the  applicant.

About a month later, the council decided it had better  head the next 
request off and passed a 45-day ban so it  could work out a strategy 
to address location, the  criteria for operation and other zoning issues.

Near the end of that moratorium the council decided it  needed more 
time, so the ban was extended for another  10 months and 15 days. 
According to staff reports, one  of the reasons for the extension was 
to wait and see  what happens with a pending lawsuit, Qualified 
Patients  Assn. v. City of Anaheim, in Orange County. It is 
anticipated that the ruling will provide a definitive  opinion 
regarding municipal bans on medical marijuana  shops.

That case could be decided as early as April 29, and  maybe earlier, 
a city staff report said.

Calistoga police have warned that dispensaries tend to  be magnets 
for loitering and crime, while dispensary  proponents say they serve 
a medical need and increase  tax revenue.

Calistoga is one of four cities in the county that has  moved to 
block marijuana dispensaries. Only Napa, which  is working up 
regulations to oversee a single  dispensary, plans to approve a 
marijuana clinic.
- ---
MAP posted-by: Jay Bergstrom